On Monday 17th January 2005, competition and rivalry will be put aside as the UK’s commercial radio stations come together for the first time to create UK Radio Aid.
This national commercial radio event will specifically focus on raising money for the children affected by the Asian Tsunami and support them as they to start to rebuild their lives and look to the future.
Emap, Capital Radio, Chrysalis, GMG Radio, GWR, SRH, Classic Gold, The Wireless Group, UKRD, The Local Radio Company, London Media, The Milestone Group, Tindle Radio, KMFM, Virgin and many independents like Nevis Radio, Juice in Liverpool, BCR FM, Bright 106.4, Telford FM, Waves Radio Peterhead, Two Lochs Radio and Spirit FM will suspend broadcast of their usual schedules across all of their national and regional stations from 6am to 6pm, and air one single programme to an estimated audience of over 20 million listeners across 200+ stations, the biggest ever UK commercial radio audience.
Never before have media owners joined forces in this way, putting humanitarian concerns before commercial gain to raise money for a charitable cause that has touched the nation. UK Radio Aid will be launched across all participating stations at 0815hrs tomorrow (11th January 2005).
Participating stations have agreed to launch the appeal by each donating one day's profits. This initial donation will be supported and built upon by asking listeners to donate one hour of their time or money to the appeal.
Some of the biggest names in radio history alongside major politicians, musicians, sports and TV stars are being asked to take part in the 12 hour broadcast that will be aired live from Capital Radio HQ in London?s Leicester Square.
Each hour of programming will be hosted by two guest DJs who will introduce live acoustic sets, guest interviews, competitions, auctions, pledges, messages and news breaks.
Mark Story, chairman of UK Radio Aid said: ? I am immensely proud of and grateful to our colleagues across commercial radio who when asked for an extraordinary response to this disaster were all in immediate agreement to unite for this very special day.
"Although this is a response to a tragedy, the day will be very much about hope, with a lot of fun and extraordinary entertainment thanks to the generosity of the artists, presenters and radio companies involved."
Listeners will be able to donate via phone, text or by clicking on www.ukradioaid.com.
Support for UK Radio Aid has been flooding in and includes backing from Prime Minister Tony Blair. Celebrity support to date includes:
"This is a tragedy that has touched everyone and it's important that the giving continues. It will take years to restore the communities in these countries and we should all do our bit to help. This is a great idea which reflects the value of working together to help." Real Madrid and England star Michael Owen
"The response from people all over the world has been incredible and unprecedented but this is not something that will be resolved in the short-term. We have all got to carry on helping and this is a really imaginative way to show what we can achieve together in the music world. Please support UK Radio Aid." Mick Jagger
"No one can fail to be moved by the this terrible disaster that has effected so many people all over the world. Please support UK Radio Aid for Tsunami on the 17th January. We can and we will make a difference with your support"…. Antony Costa (Blue)
"What a great idea. It's so fantastic that everyone is coming together to help raise money. I urge everyone to listen to the radio on the 17th January and keep donating money. The Tsunami appeal needs all the money it can get". Jamelia
"The South Asian tsunami is a global natural catastrophe on a scale that very few of us have ever experienced. Like the rest of the country, I watched in despair at what was happening in front of my eyes. Like many around the world it dawned on me that I knew many people who were caught in the disaster. This is why I intend to give my full support to UK Radio Aid on the 17th January". Beverley Knight