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Make a Programme

We believe in everyone’s right to have a voice in the media. Plains FM's volunteer broadcasters are everyday people living in Canterbury, and not radio professionals. Together with the paid staff they keep the Station on-air 24/7, supplemented with a mix of carefully-selected music and various programmes sourced from around the world to complement our schedule.

We are always interested in introducing new Access radio shows to our schedule, and invite interested individuals or groups to talk to us about their ideas for a radio show.

As a community Access radio station, the kind of shows we're most interested in are those that reflect the values inherent in Section 36c of the Broadcasting Act being 'by, for, and about' a specific interest, point of view, or belief.

This includes programmes by, for and about:

  • Women
  • Children & Youth
  • People with disabilities
  • Minorities, including ethnic minorities

Our shows cover a diverse mix of health, community, music, youth, faith and ethnic interests.
Many not-for-profit groups and organisations are under-represented in the mainstream media and use Plains FM to get their message across in their own way and language of choice.

Interested? Here's how you get started…

If you've read this you probably have an idea for a show, or have been approached by the Station regarding the possibility. First things first...

  • Do you represent a community group who wish to have their message aired?
  • Are you interested in presenting a show relating to a specific cause or concern or musical interest?

If the answer to either of these questions is "yes", then note down your ideas. The best model is to think about the content, what you would include, what you would exclude, whether you see the show as a mix of music and talk, interviews, pre-recorded content from another source, or a mix of all of these. By writing down your ideas, you start to develop a programme framework.

To help with this process, you are welcome to fill in our Airtime Application Form.
Then give us a call...


Once you have your programme ideas in place we ask you to fill out an Airtime Application form with the help of our Community Development Coordinator so we can determine the airtime rate we will charge per programme.

We keep our costs as low as possible so it is feasible for community groups to broadcast.
Airtime costs start at $16.00 plus GST per 25 minute programme and can be covered by sponsorship/advertising.
Airtime rates can vary depending on the type of programme, who it is for, if you belong to a non-profit organisation, or if you are applying as an individual.


Get radio training

All programme makers are given full training before their first programme goes to air.

You'll develop the skills to create, present, pre-record or broadcast independently over time.

Broadcasters have access to portable recording equipment and production facilities.
Assistance and advice with sponsorship and marketing your programmes is also given.

For more information about making a programme, please see Make A Programme to get you started.

Non-technical people

For a variety of reasons not everyone is able, or wants to learn how to broadcast live or be entirely independent in a technical sense. So a staff member will assist with the technical side of pre-recording your programme. Then all you need to prepare is the script, the content and present the programme. We will take care of the technical side.

Practical Skills

Others want to learn a range of practical skills as part of making a programme at Plains FM, and we encourage this.

Training is given on how to:

  • operate the live-to-air desk
  • operate the pre-recording studio
  • do digital editing

These sessions are done with a staff member one-on-one or in small groups.

Refresher Training

Sometimes we do small group training sessions with our broadcasters if software or equipment has changed. We keep our broadcasters up to date with current trends and technologies.

Airtime Applications

Please complete as fully as you can. If there is more than one person representing the programme idea, choose one person to be the contact below.

Indicates required fields

Contact Details

Organisation you represent (if applicable)

Programme Details

Programme Name 
Preferred Duration
Preferred Frequency
If Series, how many episodes?
What will your programme be about? 
What are your objectives? 
What type of audience are you aiming to reach? 
What topics/musical genres will your programme cover? 
What regular features or segments will you have? 
Any notes you wish to add to your application? 03 365 7997 154 Madras Street (on ARA campus)
   New Zealand
Proudly Funded by New Zealand On Air
Proudly Funded by New Zealand On Air