On 20th June 2006, John Myers, Chief Executive of GMG Radio asked Ofcom the question: If we bought Q96, would we be able to re-locate the station outside of the broadcast area, and co-locate it with Read Radio in Glasgow? Last week, after a public consultation, Ofcom said yes.
Billy Anderson, Managing Director of Real Radio Scotland said: “This is a great day for GMG Radio. The group is very excited about the new station and will deliver a very different format to ‘Real Radio’. The benefits of the group’s expertise can only be a good thing for the local community”.
GMG told Ofcom: "By re-housing 96.3 QFM to Real Radio in Glasgow, whilst the location is just slightly to the East of the current Paisley FM MCA (as published on the Ofcom website) we believe there will be immediate and tangible benefits to the stations output and ultimately to its commercial viability and long-term future. So therefore whilst retaining the format, we believe that the focus and direction of the station can and will be dramatically improved."
The public consultation attracted nine replies. Emap and Saga Radio did not have an opinion on the re-location of the station. However, Ron Coles, Director of Saga Radio wanted reassurances that the format and character of the station did not change. Simon Cole of UBC Media Group was in favour of the move, saying: "UBC Media views these proposals as fully in keeping with Ofcom's stated aims to regulate output rather than inputs. It is clear from their submission that listeners stand to gain from the overall package of proposals which GMG propose."
GMG Radio will not only move the station, but change the name and increase the amount of local news broadcast each day. Details of the name change will appear next month, GMG said today.