Global is handing back its FM licence for Paisley in West Scotland to Ofcom, ahead of expected changes to the XFM brand across the UK.
XFM is understood to be rebranding as Radio X, although details have yet to be confirmed by Global. RadioToday understands that the new station will be fully networked on the 97.7FM frequency in Manchester. Permission from Ofcom would have been required for this as XFM Manchester isn’t a regional station. It seems Ofcom weren’t prepared to relax their rules on local programming which say that brands can’t be fully networked to Wales and Scotland with programmes from England.
An XFM spokesperson told RadioToday: “Under current regulatory policy, we can’t further network our programmes in Scotland and so we’ve taken the difficult decision to hand the Paisley licence back to the regulator, Ofcom.”
The spokesperson added: “We are making some changes to XFM which affect a small but important number of presenters and staff. These sorts of decisions are always difficult and we’d like to thank them for their huge contribution to the station over the years and wish them well for the future.
“A very small number of staff members in Manchester and Glasgow will be affected. We are keen for them to stay with us and are working with them to find other suitable opportunities at Global.”