Seymour FM volunteers have been left devastated after the radio station’s transmission facility was robbed and destroyed by fire on Saturday.
Volunteers went to check signal issues at the Granite Park facility on Sunday and found thousands of dollars worth of broadcast equipment had been stolen and the building set on fire.
CCTV footage shows four people wearing hoodies and masks entering the premises at 9.50 pm and cutting the power to all electrical equipment, including cameras.
President Ian McOwan said the station was lucky to have a small transmission facility at the broadcast studio that allowed it to stay on air.
“It has much less power and listeners might be unable to hear us in locations far from Seymour,” he said.
“It has devastated our small team of volunteers who have put so much work into making the station what it is.
“I don’t understand how these people could be so callous. Stealing the equipment is one thing but to then go and destroy the building with fire is unthinkable.
“What boggles the mind is why they chose to steal broadcast equipment when it is going to be extremely difficult to sell.
“People far and wide, both in the community radio sector and the general community, are looking out for it.”
Mr McOwan said Seymour FM would be operating at reduced capacity for the foreseeable future while a replacement plan was arranged.
“It is unknown how we will proceed but there have already been many calls of support, offers of equipment from the community radio sector and several individuals in Seymour,” he said.
“We are beyond grateful for these offers of support. If you haven’t been responded to yet, we will get to you after the dust settles.
“We don’t know when we will be back at full capacity as there’s a lot to sort out, but we will keep the community updated when we have more information.”
Anyone with information about the theft or fire should phone Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or Seymour police on 5735 0200.