BBC confirms local radio medium wave closures

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Seven BBC local radio stations are losing their AM frequencies on January 15th, with three more stations losing at least one service.

BBC Surrey, Sussex, Humberside, Kent, Lincolnshire, Nottingham and Wiltshire will turn off their medium wave transmitters altogether, whilst partial closures all affect BBC Radio Devon, Essex and Humberside.

Here are the details:

BBC Surrey is closing 1368 kHz AM – but will remain on 104 and 104.6 MHz FM

BBC Sussex is closing 1161 and 1485 kHz AM – but will remain on 104.8, 104.5, 95.3, 95.1 and 95 MHz FM

BBC Radio Humberside is closing 1485 kHz AM – but will remain on 95.9 MHz FM

BBC Radio Kent is closing 1602 and 774 kHz AM – but will remain on 104.2, 97.6 and 96.7 MHz FM

BBC Radio Lincolnshire is closing 1368 kHz AM – but will remain on 94.9 and 104.7 MHz FM

BBC Radio Nottingham is closing 1584 kHz AM – but will remain on 95.1, 95.5 and 103.8 MHz FM

BBC Radio Wiltshire is closing 1332 and 1368 kHz AM – but will remain on 103.3, 103.5, 103.6 and 104.3 MHz FM

BBC Radio Devon is closing 1458 kHz AM – but will remain on 801 and 990 kHz AM along with 104.3, 94.8, 103.4, 96.0, 95.7 and 98.5 MHz FM

BBC Essex is closing 1530 kHz AM – but will remain on 765 and 729 kHz AM along with 95.3 and 103.5 MHz FM

BBC Radio Lancashire is closing 1557 kHz AM – but will remain on 855 kHz AM along with 95.5, 103.9 and 104.5 FM.

Kieran Clifton, Director, BBC Distribution & Business Development said: “We conducted detailed assessments of the coverage of each BBC local radio station on FM, MW and DAB. Following this process, we trialled the switch-off of a number of medium-wave transmitters and asked for audience feedback. Taken together, the audience feedback and the coverage data have informed which medium wave transmitters are unlikely to represent value for money in the longer term.”

The BBC has trialled the switch-off of a number of medium-wave transmitters over the past few years and made the decision to turn off the above 13 transmitters following audience feedback.



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Posted on Monday, January 1st, 2018 at 4:34 pm by RadioToday UK

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4 Comments
  1. Joe Smith says

    Might as well take the words “medium wave” out of the headline for all the good BBC local radio is.

  2. AlMorr says

    I would like to see BBC Scotland closing it’s 2 high power Medium Wave transmitters soon, every time I pass the high power Westerglen transmitter it gives me a sore head, radiation,
    From that same site it transmits not just BBC but Talksport and Absolute Radio as well, also Radio 4 Long Wave. If they closed that down the BBC would save millions and put that money into DAB+.

  3. Willie Bone says

    AlMorr, Assuming that a digital radio switch over plan will be announced by the government later this year & BBC Radio Scotland 2/Music Extra service will launch full time in early 2019, the midweek Scottish fitba could then be streamed on the established BBC Radio Scotland DAB channel, while the music output continues uninterrupted on the new DAB channel. Only then, could the BBC consider shutting their medium wave services down at Westerglen & Burghead! After the digital radio switchover announcement, there will be a scurry to open DAB transmitters in areas with no local DAB network yet available, to carry BBC regional services to listeners in rural areas..

  4. Alanh says

    Since digital listening is nearing the trigger point of 50 % so all AM and FM transmitters will be switched off, it is time that DAB be converted to DAB+ prior to the analog switchoff. This is what Norway has done.

    In Australia we were the first country to broadcast DAB+ at high power permanently. All but the speech only programs are in stereo, and the when the digital cliff occurs we don’t get the bubbling mud sound, the signal continues due to better error correction until the receiver just mutes.

    The comparison of sound quality between AM and DAB+ is stark particularly the high pitched sounds, the stereo and the lack of background noises.

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