Welcome to Radio Relay an audio extravaganza inspired by radio.  Marconi transmitted some of his first radio signals between Rathlin Island and Ballycastle in 1898.  In 1916, Irish rebels seized a wireless telegraphy station to make the world’s first pirate radio broadcast.  A few months later cutting edge radio technology allowed instant communication between commanders on the front line at the Battle of the Somme. Golden Thread Gallery have invited artists to create artworks that use radio to receive dispatches from the past and send messages to the future.  This is your opportunity to work with some of our artists and to get involved!

Golden Thread Gallery is offering schools a FREE opportunity to make their own foxhole radios with artists Gareth Moore and Deirdre McKenna. A limited number of sessions will be available from 3rd May until 10th June 2016! On 18th June, Radio Relay will hit the airwaves and participants will be able to tune in and connect with all the Radio Projects.  They will also be invited to participate in a range of Radio Relay events in sites in and around Belfast.


Radio Relay will give young people an opportunity to make a modern version of a first world war foxhole radio. The foxhole type radio was primitive in its construction, made from readily available materials and powered only by the very radio waves it received. This would be similar to what was used by Marconi in his early radio experiments.

We will use art to explore radio in its purest form. Radio was first developed during a time of scientific and cultural revolutions, bearing witness to the transformation of the world and how we communicate in it today. The objective is to transmit an awareness of early radio communication and the responsibility and importance communication has as a social instrument. This responsibility is more relevant than ever today.

Suitable for Year 8 and Year 9 pupils.  If your school is interested in this project please get in touch with Ruth or Deirdre at Golden Thread Gallery [email protected] or ring: 028 90330920

Session Plan

Session Duration: 90 minutes

Year Group: Year 8 or Year 9.

The session breaks down as follows.

10 mins: Introduction to the project and the artists

35 mins: each student will make a crystal set radio and get to take it home too!

20 mins: each student will make a loop antenna receiver to accompany the radio.

20 mins: Sound Catching – experiment on the school grounds (outside) catching radio waves and creating a sonic map of the area, this is a group activity.

5 mins: evaluation and closing thoughts.

For further information and to sign up to take part

Contact Deirdre or Ruth via email to [email protected] and please put in the subject line RADIO RELAY and we will be happy to tell you more about the project.
All materials and equipment will be provided.

Places are limited and booking is essential.

Radio Relay is co-commissioned by Golden Thread Gallery and 14-18 NOW.
For further information on Radio Relay visit – https://www.goldenthreadgallery.co.uk/events/radio-relay-past-frequencies-live-transmissions/