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GMG Radio shuts Manchester TV station

Real and Smooth owner GMG Radio has closed down its local television station Channel M.

The station went off the air yesterday, with the radio group blaming the ‘unviable’ new government proposals for local TV.

Channel M has been run from GMG Radio’s Salford Quays building for the last two years, following the sale of the Manchester Evening News by GMG’s parent company and the decision by new owners Trinity Mirror to not buy the TV channel too. At one point Channel M ran a live breakfast magazine show and evening news programmes as well as producing a mix of live and pre-recorded bespoke programmes. The operation was scaled back significantly, with just three staff positions now being made redundant as a result of the closure.

The station had been on the air for 12 years on analogue and latterly Freeview in the Greater Manchester area. It also broadcast nationally on the Sky EPG.

GMG Radio Chief Executive Stuart Taylor said: “We’ve been in a holding pattern with Channel M for two years awaiting the outcome of the government’s future plans for local TV. Sadly, we don’t feel they provide us with the framework needed to grow Channel M into a profitable business that delivers the quality service viewers and advertisers expect from GMG. I want to thank Channel M Controller John Furlong and his team for all they have done through this difficult period”.

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