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Farewell, Focal Radio

After being on air less than a year, Focal Radio went off air at 1pm today. The closure of the Stoke-on-Trent based DAB radio station comes despite what it called "overwhelming" support from the local community.

Focal had been given until the beginning of June to find new investment after millionaire backer Mo Chaudry pulled funding from the station. However, the station ran out of time and has had no alternative but to stop broadcasting.

"It's a sad time for all the team", said Station Manager Verity Hilton. "They have all been working really hard to gain more investment, but time has not been on our side".

Focal Radio first went on air on November 5th and was partly the brainchild of Potteries broadcasting veteran Sam Plank. "We have been overwhelmed by the support our listeners and the business community of the area have given us", said Sam.

“We were pledged over 3/4 of our target to take the radio station forward but couldn't achieve the other £20,000”, he added. “None of us can cash any of those pledges without knowing there is a future.

“I would like to thank everyone for their support over the years – especially our listeners – if it wasn't for them we wouldn't have contemplated the future!"

Focal Radio went off air when Plank finished his programme at 1pm today.

It originally went on air in November 2008, but closed down after four months on-air after the original backers pulled out citing difficulties in gaining advertising. It reopened with Mr Chaudry's backing at the beginning of March, but again struggled to bring in advertisers.

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