Author Topic: Rohnan O'Rahilly  (Read 392 times)


  • Previously known as Millimole
Rohnan O'Rahilly
« on: 21 April, 2020, 08:44:37 am »
The founder of Radio Caroline died yesterday. He was a controversial figure from a wealthy background who used his family wealth in the 60s to develop a playboy lifestyle and have a number of curious business interests. The one he'll be remembered for is getting Radio Caroline on air in 1964  ahead of his rivals.

Caroline wasn't the first British radio pirate (Normandie) nor the first offshore broadcaster (Mercur) but the first offshore British pirate radio station.
O'Rahilly tapped into the beginnings of the British 'Swinging Sixties' and led a true revolution in broadcasting. Its often said that without Radio Caroline Britain wouldn't have had commercial radio - I don't think that's true, but the broadcaster did hasten commercial radio by maybe five years
O'Rahilly was apparently a difficult man, living on his wits, and apparently becoming increasingly miserly - probably as a prelude to dementia.

The Caroline organisation - like many of the 'peace, love & understanding' generation was wracked with division and unpleasantness, eventually congealing around Peter Moore, another larger than life character, and the station now morphed into a successful, but niche, broadcaster.
While his radio ship never sailed up the Thames as predicted by Johnny Walker he leaves an astonishing legacy that has shaped British entertainment.

Ronan O'Rahilly 21st May 1940 – 20th April 2020

Too many angry people - breathe & relax.


  • Enjoying life in the slow lane
Re: Rohnan O'Rahilly
« Reply #1 on: 21 April, 2020, 09:54:39 am »
Was he was the inspiration for the Bill Nighy character in The Boat That Rocked?
Why should anybody steal a watch when they can steal a bicycle?