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WANTED: UK Radio Aid 2

Almost five years to the day, something unique happened in UK commercial radio.

On January 17 2005, stations put aside competition and united to raise money for victims of the Asian tsunami.

The day long simulcast was called UK Radio Aid and more than three million pounds was raised.

After the event, there was talk of more such events to come to demonstrate what can happen when commercial radio thinks big and comes together.

Nothing since has matched the ambition of UK Radio Aid.

This morning, as I read that Dutch broadcasters are staging an event in aid of the Haiti earthquake appeal, I couldn’t help but think is it time for UK Radio Aid 2?

Five years ago, I was News Editor at Capital Radio and I was asked to head up the news operation for the first UK Radio Aid.

I worked alongside colleagues from rival groups and we provided content for a record breaking audience for commercial radio of more than 17 million listeners across the day.

Chris Evans returned to radio to present the breakfast show, joined by the Prime Minister, Ricky Gervais provided comedy and there was live music from the biggest chart acts of then.

I think many of us benefited personally from the day – we felt inspired by the project, it re-ignited our believe in the power of commercial radio and we were heart warmed by the boundless generosity of our listeners.

Conversations may well be on-going to stage UK Radio Aid 2 but, if not, please can I ask commercial radio bosses to consider it?

I am sure Radio Today will gladly receive statements of intent and the people of Haiti will be grateful to read them too.

Written by [link=http://www.newsleadermedia.com]Justin Kings[/link] for RadioToday.co.uk

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