Southport’s Dune FM has stopped broadcasting after Ofcom had to physically remove the station’s transmitter.
The company which owned the licence was subject to a winding-up order on July 9th, meaning licence became void.
Ofcom rules state that a company which has been wound-up cannot own a broadcasting licence. The regulator had been in touch with the station recently to request they stopped broadcasting – a request which was apparently ignored by those in charge at Dune FM.
The station’s last owner was Southport Radio Limited, headed by Jon Jessop.
Creditors visited the station late last year and removed studio and office equipment and a previous owner Proud FM Ltd issued a winding-up order against Dune FM earlier this year.
The regulator told RadioToday.co.uk: “The Dune FM service was no longer being broadcast by the licence holder, which had gone into liquidation. As a result, Ofcom last week requested that the station come off air. The station did not comply by the deadline and Ofcom has subsequently removed the transmitter.”
It’s the first time Ofcom has had to physically remove a transmitter in order to stop the station broadcasting.
A message on the station’s website seems to think the station will be back on-air, saying: “Sorry due to a technical fault we are off-air. Our technical team are working hard and we hope to be back with you shortly!”
Dune FM commenced broadcasting in 1997 as an independent station, and has had various owners over the years including Forward Media and The Local Radio Company.
UPDATE: 7PM – Dune has returned online as Southport’s only commercial online radio station and is continuing with programmes as normal.