Ofcom has awarded the new local licence for Liverpool to Emap.
Emap won the licence for CityTalk after a battle between some of the biggest UK radio groups including UTV Radio, Chrysalis, GCap and GMG. Ofcom took four months to decide who the winner would be.
This is the second licence won by Emap under Ofcom, after winning Kerrang! Radio in the Midlands in 2005.
Terry Smith, Chairman of Radio City, who founded the station in 1974, said: “We are delighted at the news and it will give a great boost to the services our two stations, Radio City and Magic, already provide for Merseyside.
“The new station will be 100 per cent speech and nothing like any existing service in the UK. It will tackle real issues and real emotions through the eyes of real people.
“We knew we were being radical in our application and applaud Ofcom for recognising our vision. We are now ready to create some more great radio for the area. Work on the project starts tomorrow when we shall start looking for people who want to be part of something absolutely new.”
CityTalk will be a compelling mix of conversation, skillfully laced with news, sports, current affairs, comedy and local issues. CityTalk will not be dominated by cheap phone-ins, instead it will offer intriguing insider views, local comment, around-the-world insight, and in-depth commentary on the biggest stories of the day alongside the most pressing local issues.
These will be interspersed with regular ‘flagship’ programmes which will tackle topics in a more in-depth way. These will include ‘Home from the House’, in which a local MP answers listeners’ questions; ‘Rag Mag’, a programme produced by students at Liverpool’s John Moores University; ‘Worldwide Radio’ an hour from an English speaking station from wherever in the world the biggest story is that week.
There will also be lifestyle, celebrity and comedy features to ensure a balance throughout the schedule.
In addition to the flagship shows, other regular features would include: ‘Lost Liverpool’ investigating the hidden gems amongst Liverpool’s streets; ‘Battle of the Sexes’, a daily trivia quiz; ‘Our Kid’, tackling parenting issues and ‘Pub Spy, giving the listener the latest lowdown on the latest openings. CityTalk will also feature regular comedy shows, business and money features and investigations into Liverpool’s property scene.
Sport will play a key part in CityTalk’s schedule with a nightly two-hour sports show featuring a host of local sports people for expert debate across the whole spectrum of local sports.
Emap will also be able to call on its portfolio of experts from the entertainment world with regular updates from journalists from the likes of Heat, Empire and Grazia.
The licence is for a service to cover Liverpool which has an adult population (aged 15+) between 1,400,000 and 1,500,000. However, the exact coverage will be determined by the location of the transmission site and other technical characteristics. The proposed frequency, 105.9 MHz, is subject to international agreement on radio spectrum usage.
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