UTV faces competition for Wolverhampton licence

Ofcom has received two declarations of intent to apply for the local commercial radio FM licence for Wolverhampton.

A new company, Omni Radio is listed as a potential applicant, helped by former Signal Radio Programme Director John Evington. The licence is currently held by UTV Radio (talkSPORT ltd) and broadcasting as Signal 107.

John Evington’s company The Radio People is supporting the bid. He tells RadioToday: “Wolverhampton is a large city with a strong sense of identity and was, for 30 years, home to Beacon Radio – one of commercial radio’s biggest success stories’. John continued, ‘I strongly believe that it is radio that has changed not people and, with the right local formula, it is possible to win back the hearts, minds and ears of Wolverhampton”.

The advertisement is open to all applicants and not limited to the two companies, UTV and Omni, who have submitted a declaration of intent to apply for this licence.

A UTV spokesperson told RadioToday: “Signal 107 is aware that there is another bidder for its Wolverhampton licence. Signal 107 continues to provide fantastic local radio for Wolverhampton and beyond, and we are relishing the prospect that this bid process gives us to showcase our plans to continue to do so for the next 12 years.”

Signal 107 originally launched as 107.7 The Wolf in 1997 and rebranded in 2012 as a result of the merger of three stations – The Wolf, The Severn and The Wyre.

Speaking for The Radio People, David Duffy said, ‘There has to be something wrong when a city of 250,000 people no longer has its own, dedicated, commercial radio station. Our client believes that the people of Wolverhampton are being
underserved and it is their intention to rectify this situation by bringing local radio back to the city.’

The closing date for applications is 3:00pm on Tuesday 24 March 2015.

We’ll add a comment from Omni here very soon, come back later for more details.

Posted on Tuesday, December 2nd, 2014 at 12:14 pm by RadioToday

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