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The first turf for Derriford Hospital was cut by the Lord Mayor, Clifford Porter, on December 7th 1973. Built by Messrs Higgs & Hill (Builders) Ltd of New Malden, Surrey. Conducted tours started June 26th 1980. Sterilisation centre opened the week of January 16th 1981. The hospital was opened unexpectedly around February 27th 1981 when a boiler broke down at Plympton's Gables Hospital.
Official opening was June 9th 1981 when the first patients were Mrs Shirley Jenkins followed by Mr Fred Hobbs.
Hospital Radio Plymouth transferred from the old Freedom Fields Hospital to Derriford Hospital in 1994.
On April 12th 1995 the Vice-Chief of the Defence Staff, Air Chief Marshall Sir John Willis KCB CBE RAF, opened the Royal Naval Hospital Unit, otherwise known as Stonehouse Ward. This replaced the Royal Naval Hospital at Stonehouse and is manned by doctors and nurses from the military services.
In 1955 the TOC-H organisation began broadcasting to nine Plymouth hospitals on Saturday afternoons when Plymouth Argyle were playing at home. They used the GPO telephone network and proved highly popular with the patients.
During 1967 the Plymouth Lions Club started broadcasting a programme of music to patients at Mount Gould Hospital. "Disc Date" was broadcast on alternate Wednesday evenings and lasted only as long as the number of requests that had been received.
Early in 1969 Mr Jimmie Constable, Mr Tom Hepple, chairman of the Plymouth Lions Club, and Mr Joe Pengelly, a member of the local BBC unit, started to produce a weekly show. Like its predecessors, this proved immensely popular and it was decided to move to larger premises. Number 44 New Street, near the Barbican, became the new studio and it was officially opened by the Lord Mayor of Plymouth, Alderman George Creber, at 8pm on Thursday October 2nd 1969.
The first programmes, two hours of news and entertainment, were transmitted to all the hospitals in the City on Thursday evenings. The equipment all came from the BBC and their technicians did the installation work. The Station was funded by the Plymouth Lions Club and the operation of the studio was was in the hands of some 40 volunteers led by Mr Maurice Moore, a technician working for the BBC in Plymouth.
The radio station soon outgrew the premises in New Street and in March 1973 they moved to the old Ladies' Hospital in Lockyer Street. At the end of that decade they moved to the basement of a property in Nelson Street, Stoke, that the Trust already owned.
Two further moves occurred, in 1986 to Greenbank Hospital and in 1994 to Freedom Fields Hospital, before Hospital Radio Plymouth finally ended up at its present location, Derriford Hospital.
Currently the station broadcasts live from 2pn until Midnight Mondays to Fridays and from 8am until 10pm on Saturdays and Sundays. Outside of those times the station relays what Station Manager, Mr Andrew M Hill, describes as 'an eclectic mix of classical hits'.
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