Ofcom is inviting applications for community radio services to operate on FM and AM throughout the South East.
The regulator is not excluding any areas from the application process on the basis of frequency availability as it has done in the past for other areas. Instead, it will look at the applications received and reject or accept them based on frequency availability before any further analysis is undertaken.
However, Ofcom will offer some guidance on availability of suitable frequencies in different parts of the south east to save any unnecessary spends of the £600 non-refundable application fee.
Ofcom wants applications stretching from Banbury and Oxford to the Isle of Wight and Brighton, and the from Hampshire to Ashford and Dover.
The area in red, shown on the map below, Ofcom says that there are unlikely to be any suitable frequencies, based on recent frequency planning work it has done in these areas but does accept that it might be possible to plan a service at some locations when a specific site is chosen. The amber area is where there may be some availability and the green areas are where Ofcom has identified one or more suitable frequencies.
There are green circled areas in Brighton, Portsmouth, Southampton, Newbury, High Wycombe, Aylesbury, Rye, Lydd, Alton, Chatham.
The closing date for receipt of applications is 5 pm on Tuesday 20 October 2015 and applicants can read the full invite here.