Soundart Radio in Dartington is a non profit community radio station and the only radio station with studios in the South Hams. 

They have recently moved into a new studio area on the Dartington Estate.

Soundart was founded as a student radio station by Dartington College of Arts students Lucinda Guy and Helen Harrison.

Lucinda explains how it all began: “I had been living in London before moving down here and community radio was starting to get underway.

“I did some programmes for Renaissance FM in the past.

“When I came to Totnes I went to the Dartington School of Arts and we decided that a student station would be a good idea.”

In 2009 it obtained a community radio broadcasting  licence as an arts radio station and can be heard in and around Totnes.

Station Manager Chris Booth has been involved since the start and explained: “We don’t run advertising, we’re not paid to play, we like to be free at the point of delivery and our purpose is to be open and accessible to all.

“Everybody who feels they can make a radio show or wants to make a radio show is welcome to get in touch and try things out on air”

Chris continued: “We might give people guidance and technical advice and we have to operate within broadcasting law but we don’t suggest the type of shows that people should do or the type of music that they should play.”

It is a member of Radia which is a network of community stations from 15 countries around the world.

Lucinda continued: 

“There aren’t lots of signs up telling people what to do like ‘don’t swear’ or bring your cup of coffee too near the studio equipment.

“We just say ‘this is yours too so take care of it’ and people just know what to do and not do when they’re on air.

That said we do have to follow the Ofcom broadcasting code and are accountable.’

In 2020 the organisation opened Skylark Radio covering Dartmoor on two frequencies 105.8MHz in the west and 107.6MHz in the east.

The station broadcasts ‘An ever-changing and continuous broadcast weaves together oral histories, new music, and live audio streams from people, animals, plants and weather, into an endless and evolving song.’

It uses a computer algorithm to mix the different sounds.

Creative Producer Alice Armstrong said they’ve got a special event coming up: “It’s called ‘Back to the Rat’ and it’s a chance to visit the station, celebrate our new studio space, we’d like to welcome alumni to tell is their stories about Dartington and it’s history, local people from Totnes and anyone who’d like to come along and find out about community radio.

“There will be storytelling and there may even be some dancing.”

‘Back to the Rat’ is on between 2pm and 7pm at Soundart Radio, Room 1, Higher Close, Dartington Estate.

Soundart Radio can be heard on 102.5MHz FM and online at: