Tributes to former Jersey politician behind Channel 103

The passing of Robin Rumboll, a key figure in the story behind our radio station Channel 103, at the age of 84 has been marked by a minute’s silence by States Members in Jersey.

Originally qualifying as a chartered accountant with Price Waterhouse before becoming a partner at the Coopers & Lybrand in Jersey, Deputy Rumboll went on to hold a variety of roles in Jersey politics.

In 1981, he was elected as a Deputy of the States of Jersey, sitting as a Deputy until 1996, serving as President of the Education and the Legislation Committees, as President of Jersey Telecom, as well as Vice President of Agriculture and Fisheries and Public Health, and as a member of the Defence Committee.

His work as part of the States of Jersey’s Broadcasting Committee led to meetings in the States Chamber recorded and broadcast on Channel Television and BBC Radio Jersey for the first time.

He was the driving force behind the island’s first Freedom of Information law and legislation, which allowed the introduction of commercial radio to the island, and he went on to be a co-founder and Chairman of Channel Radio Limited, which went on air in 1992 as Channel 103, having won a competitive tender from the Radio Authority.

The station was subsequently acquired by Tindle Radio in 1997, although Robin remained as Chairman until 2020.

Local vision

His involvement with commercial radio later expanded to the UK with interests in CTFM, Crash FM, Victory FM and Bath FM.

Channel 103’s current Managing Director James Keen said: “Robin had the vision to see the how local radio could be a force for good in Jersey.

“He worked to nurture and sustain the radio station throughout his 28 years as Chairman.

“Channel 103’s success to date is a testament to his guidance and leadership.”

States Members took part in a minute’s silence on Tuesday, 17th October.

It was the first sitting since Robin’s death on Wednesday 4th October.

Away from media and politics, Mr Rumboll was involved in many Jersey charities, including Jersey Cheshire Homes Foundation, Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust and Help A Jersey Child.

He is survived by his wife, Cynthia, and children Vanessa, Julia, Christopher and Joanna.

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