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Ceredigion wants format change

Radio Ceredigion has submitted a request to Ofcom to change its format.

The station wants to remove the current requirement that the station’s bilingual output should equate to roughly half and half English and Welsh.

It also wishes to reduce the requirement for Welsh-language music tracks (during daytime hours) from 20 per cent to 10 per cent of music output, and Ofcom needs to seek views of the public before it can make a decision.

The change would give the station greater flexibility on the way it broadcasts interviews and features. The application explains one example where the

[blockquote]A recent example is Radio Ceredigion’s appearance on BBC 1's “DIY SOS” programme, when a small part of the interview was aired during the show. Our programming team wanted to re-play the full interview with Nick Knowles at 11.15am but decided it could not as it was 5 minutes of English language which would be almost impossible to balance with Welsh without breaking into full Welsh programming for an hour or two. This is because, like most small local stations, the bulk of our output is music so speech is limited in any case. We were therefore forced to air the interview at 1910 to allay any fears of breaking the 50/50 obligation during daytime.[/blockquote]

Radio Ceredigion was launched in 1992, and is a small-scale service with a Measured Coverage Area of 72,000 adults (aged 15+). The station was acquired by Town and Country Broadcasting Ltd in April 2010, via a majority-owned subsidiary company Radio Ceredigion Ltd, and the new owners were given permission by Ofcom to relocate the station from its previous base in Aberystwyth to co-locate (outside of its Measured Coverage Area) with other Town and Country-owned stations at Narberth.

Ofcom invites written views and comments on the issues raised in this document, to be made by 5pm on 03 June 2011.

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