Community Radio

I believe it goes into affect from Monday the 5th of December, as that’s the point of expiry of the TCBL licencees.

I did try to confirm this with the Pulse FM management today, but they were hazy on the details…


I am surprised that they are allowed to call themselves Pulse FM given the proximity of Pulse 94.1 in Wollongong…many parts of Sydney could receive both.

No likely confusion with Pulse Geelong or Josh’s Pulse FM in Hobart, but the name is a tad overused.


I wonder which transmission site will be allocated to Pulse fm for their new full time licence?
Will it be the Hawkesbury Radio site on Burralow Rd, or the inferior Grass Karts site?


Just done a check on ACMA, they are yet to post up the new licence for Hawkesbury Community Media Network Association inc, (Pulse Fm) 89.9 MHz

Their current site and specs for Grass Karts,
Altitude 568m
Antenna Height 10m

0-90 500W
90-180. 50W
180-270. 500W
270-360. 750W

TCL expires on the 5/12/2022

IMO ACMA will probably grant them the same specs from the same site for their new full time licence. Fine for coverage to the east, but poor for coverage towards the west of their licence area thanks to the ridge line, and low antenna height.


Where’s the Grass Karts site? I couldn’t find an address for it.


On the ACMA map on Bells Line of Rd just north of Kurrajong Heights. Also the home of the LPONS River fm and Faith fm.

This brings me to something very interesting I found out from looking through the ACMA files.

The Seventh Day Adventists look like they have done a deal with Noise fm, owners of River Fm.
Their feed to the transmitter site at Grass Karts, Kurrajong Heights originates from the same address in Jamisontown as River fm.
There are two STL’s microwaves linking to the tower at Grass Karts Kurrajong Heights, one for River fm, and the other for Faith fm.

I traced this through the ACMA website.


Thanks for that! Yes, Burralow Rd looks to be a more suitable site for the licence area.

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It certainly is, Grass Karts struggles just a couple of Kms to the west, blocked by the ridge line. The LPON’s are very weak at the Bowling club just a couple of kms from the transmitter.
Grass Karts cannot cover to Mt Tomah, the western boundary of the LA.

Burralow provides fortuitous car coverage to around Clarence, it is an excellent site.


Proper transmission equipment and a solid site at the Axicom tower on burralow rd, to take over the lease from HR has been offered in good faith to pulseFM… I have been made aware that they did not choose to take up the offer, and probably just decided to leave their transmission side of things in the hands of The operator of RiverFM…

I sent them my congratulations…
I wish them all the best…


Both Hawkesbury Radio and Harmony FM have an existing lease on the Axicom site at Burralow Road.

Cost per antenna on this site is around 500 to 900 dollars per month per antenna and if you have a stacked array, you’ll be paying this for each antenna in the array, so double the figures above, four bay stacked array, quadruple this cost.

Axicom usually insist on a 5 to 10 year lease term, therefore depending on when either groups lease expires, they could be up for significant tower space expense for many years to come, without a licence to broadcast! Axicom are unlikely to let you out of a lease early, as is their right.


I can see why most aspirants have gone for the Grass Karts site now, it must be considerably cheaper then the Axicom site for antenna space rent.

Axicom would be charging TX Australia a fair bit considering they have a four panel stacked UHF broadcast antenna on their second tower.

Do you know what they charge for antenna rental space at Grass Karts?

If you can get a substantial discount by using Grass Karts over Axicom you would take the coverage deficiencies to the west. 90% or more of the Windsor LA audience is to the east. At the Axicom site costs you would have to weigh up the costs of serving the sparser populated areas on the western side of the Windsor LA.


Im not sure what the other groups pay at the grass karts but there are many other options along the ridge, Telstra, Transgrid, Private property and i think Council has a tower up there too?


I’ve been there Alex… The only Aspirant with their own site. Fully council approved 20m pole in the ground on a 2+2 year lease with the golf course where it was. Quotes to upgrade the power supply for us and other services potentially coming in. Exsiting array running but not legally allowed to attach to the pole as council approval only arrived in the last 2 months of our TCBL. The really bad news drops 2 weeks later.

All gear paid for… Studio running with respectible costs (not stupid costs) because it was located in some fancy premises. That was a giggle when looking over everyone’s submissions.

I’m 1 out of 5 groups vying for 3 licenses on the GC this is back in Nov 2001 all this drops. I’ve already tossed 2 get togethers put on all the food and drink and said… Right guys… We all know what TXA want… Here’s what I can do it for… Don’t think of me as oppostion… Think of me as the alternative site guy…

All this took place… and ABA give me the excuse… We don’t think you can technically support the full time operation of the service. Some times you just have to laugh… We were used as test dummies for the Hot Tomato frequency on 102.9. We were months off full power if we got the full time license (which would have needed a change in freq). It took the 3 that are on air today between 1 to 2.5 years to get organised. Plus I know 1 atleast isn’t on full power to this day.

I turned it into a reasonable business running comms until the ACMA came along and a 600 dollar a year comms license went up to 1200+… The same thing today is closing on 3000 a year just for the comms license.

Cheers all…


It’s like a verbal agreement deal with the site owner kind of deal…

I have no clue how much they charge, … last time I seen it was all over grown in some parts.


I keep saying this, but owning a license is a closed shop; there is some sort of exclusive fraternity that seem to know how to snap these up.

How much space would be required for a broadcast antenna, are we talking about 10x10 meters?

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Pulse FM Hawkesbury finally provide a Media Release this morning on their Facebook page re ACMA awarding them a full time licence which commences from 6/12/2022.

The Team at Pulse FM Radio would like to thank all the listeners, sponsors and volunteers that have enjoyed, supported the efforts of all.

We are excited and honored to serve the Hawkesbury Community as the sole Licensed Community Radio Station on 89.9 fm 7 days continuously.

Media Release

"The Hawkesbury Community Media Network Association (PulseFM) is delighted to have been awarded a full license by ACMA to broadcast via the 89.9fm MHz frequency in the Windsor RA1 licence area from December 6, 2022.

PulseFM has been operating on a Temporary FM license since 5th December 2021 and streaming 24/7 via a multitude of streaming platforms including IHeart radio its inception in July 2021.

The station is committed to providing a diverse range of programming including, music, conversation, local national and international news, current affairs, sport, local topics and community events which caters for the needs and wants of the Hawkesbury community.

“The Board and management of PulseFM are excited by the recent ACMA announcement and we feel privileged to be able to broadcast to our community under a full licence. We look forward to providing an outstanding service to the community that will be entertaining, informative and relevant to the people of the Hawkesbury,” Chair Richard Griffiths said.

“I would like to thank the Board, station presenters, sponsors, volunteers and in particular our Station Manager Kathryn Gene for the hard work and dedication in ensuring PulseFM is at the forefront of community radio in the Hawkesbury,” he said.

PulseFM will commence broadcasting under its full licence from Tuesday 6th December and can be heard on the 89.9FM band.


For further information please contact

Station Manager Kathryn Gene on 0408 411 865


For those of us that have done the hard slog. Listened to all the ABA (now ACMA) catch phrases. Everything from “sparse resource” and must be “effective use of spectrum”. You put in the effort and you get told noand you are given some really silly excuses.

I’d like to offer this thought to those most likely licking thier wounds at the moment. It will never be said out loud but its definitely ACMA water cooler talk. We all know that when it gets in the water… there is a problem. If you know in your heart your team was tracking well… I bet the Commercial Boys know that too. Being NOT given a Full Time License then becomes a hint. they see you as a threat. Thus being awarded a full time license means they dont think you will upset the big boys. Don’t forget one of ACMA’s “catch phrases” as I call them is - Community Radio is meant to “Compliment” NOT “Compete”! As anyone with an ounce of brains knows the only way to judge effective spectrum use is dails locked on. So to me an effective use of spectrum is a community service going toe to toe with the big boys. Oh no can’t have that now can we? :wink:

To be extremely brief… yes I see being awarded a Community License as a backhanded expection of your going to fail. Am I right or am I a twisted individual? Cheers All


Unfortunately the entire radio industry in Australia is ultimately a closed shop protectionist racket, aided and abetted by ACMA, designed to keep the incumbent commercial operators happy and profitable at the expense of the listening public.

I’ve not long returned from 3 weeks in the US and it was amazing just how much diversity of listening choices there was on the dial- this was even in areas that were pretty off the beaten track (small population rural areas).

Commercial radio operators can virtually get away with murder (or have the rules changed to suit the licensee, case in point, 3BT in Ballarat and 3SR in Shepparton which are exempt from most local content rules for commercial licences so they can be a relay of 3UZ). Community radio and narrowcast operators on the other hand have to tread very carefully not to put a toe out of line or become too popular lest they end up under ACMA scrutiny.


Always a professional @Mechsta, why not apply at Pulse? Any inclusive community broadcaster would be glad for your contributions.


Could the Hawkesbury be ready for a Prog Rock show? It worked up here and in Braidwood! :joy: