Ofcom today announces the award of seven new community radio licences. This brings the total number of community radio licences awarded to date to 62.
Community radio is a new sector of radio being introduced in the UK. It will become the third tier of radio which will complement the mix of services already provided by the BBC and commercial radio sectors.
The characteristics of community radio are distinct from commercial radio in that the services will cover a small geographical area and be provided on a not-for-profit basis focusing on the delivery of specific social benefits to enrich a particular geographical community or a community of interest.
Ofcom has awarded community radio licences in the following areas:
Central and East Brighton
The new community radio licensees in each of these areas are:
RadioReverb (Central and East Brighton)
Contact: Karen Cass, 170 North Street, Brighton BN1 1EA
Tel: 01273 323040, email: [email protected]
RadioReverb will provide a community radio service for the Central and East Brighton areas, focusing on the needs of the deprived Marine and Moulsecoomb wards and other underserved groups.
Colchester Garrison FM
Contact: Major (retired) David Cassey OBE, Colcester Army Radio, NAAFI, Colcester, Essex CO2 9PF
Tel: 01206 782020 or 01206 782589, email: [email protected]
Colchester Garrison FM?s target community comprises soldiers, their families and Ministry of Defence civilians in Colchester.
Spirit of Plymouth FM
Contact: Christopher Girdler, Cornerstone House, 28 Old Park Road, Peverell, Plymouth, Devon PL3 4PY Tel: 01752 242272, email: [email protected]
Spirit of Plymouth FM will serve the Christian community of Plymouth.
West Hull Community Radio (West Hull)
Contact: Barry Robinson, 56 Gorsedale, Sutton Park, Hull, HU7 4AT
Tel: 07986 127999, email: [email protected]
West Hull Community Radio will aim to provide a service to all of the community in West Hull.
Resonance FM (South Bank & Bankside)
Contact: Ed Baxter, London Musicians? Collective Ltd, 3.6 Lafone House, 11-13 Leathermarket Street, London SE1 3HN.
Tel: 07817 082620,
email: [email protected], website: www.resonancefm.com
This service is targeted at inner London?s community of practising artists and those outside the mainstream media. The audience also includes the socially deprived, minority groups and the culturally under-represented.
Sound Radio (Hackney)
Contact: Lol Gellor, Sound Vision Trust, 15 Olympus Square, Hackney, London E5 8PL.
Tel: 020 8533 4003, email: [email protected], website: www.soundradio.info
This station will broadcast on AM and continue to target the diverse range of communities that comprise Hackney and East London. The station offers a schedule of multi-cultural multi-lingual programming with a backbone of English language community output.
Desi Radio (Southall)
Contact: Ms Amarjit Khera, The Panjabi Centre Ltd, 30 Sussex Road, Southall, Middx UB2 5EG.
Tel: 020 8574 9591, email: [email protected], Website: www.desiradio.org.uk.
Desi Radio provides a community radio service for the Panjabi community in West London, including the different faith communities and nationalities, and people of all ages. It broadcasts on AM.
In addition to the licence awards detailed above, Ofcom has decided not to award licences to the following 33 applicants:
Slough Asian Radio
Citizen Radio, Slough
Difusion FM, Wembley
Link FM Radio, Brent
2.4 Stadium FM, Brent
Avenues FM, Queens Park & Paddington
Bounce FM, Holloway Road
Issue FM, Lambeth
TLS FM, Lambeth
City Radio Clapham Park
ECO Radio, Wandsworth
Demo FM, Streatham Hill
Raven Sound, Bromley
Azhar Community Radio, Forest Gate
Betar Bangla, Tower Hamlets
Radio BG London, Leytonstone
Akasamona Radio, Hackney
Break FM, Newham
Gina FM, Newham
From the Nam FM, Dagenham
Red FM, Redbridge
Gravesham Community Radio, Gravesend
Shalom FM, Hendon
Hope Link Radio, Haringey
City Radio Haringey
Sussex Surrey Radio, Redhill
Radio La Voz, London-wide
Lowland Radio, Dumfries & Galloway
Ofcom received 46 applications for a community radio licence in Greater London and the surrounding areas. Three licences have been awarded today and Ofcom has decided not to award licences to a further 32 applicants (see notes below). The remaining 11 applications, all of which propose to broadcast on FM, are still under consideration in this region. However, because of limited availability of suitable FM frequencies, Ofcom does not expect to be able to license more than a small number of community radio stations in the FM band in the Greater London area.
Ofcom recognises the strong demand for these services which serve specific community needs, particularly within urban areas, and is committed to developing a strong community radio sector in the UK. As stated in Ofcom?s Radio Review, in time it is possible that changes such as an end to simulcasting of existing radio services on analogue and digital platforms could free-up spectrum that will create more space for new community radio stations.
Licences are awarded for a five-year period.
A statement setting out the main determining factors for the award of the seven community radio licences set out above will be available shortly from the Ofcom website.