talkSPORT to turn off seven AM transmitters

talkSPORT has gained Ofcom approval to turn off seven medium wave transmitters across the UK.

The change means that talkSPORT’s medium wave (AM) coverage across the UK, will be marginally reduced from 95% to 93.4%, affecting 1.3 million potential listeners.

talkSPORT said that there has been a decline in analogue listening at a rate faster than it had predicted and the listening at the sites, based on RAJAR data, is no longer at appreciable levels due to the evolution of audience behaviour.

Two responses were received, both against the plan.

The following seven transmitters to close are:

• Rosemarkie (Inverness);
• Redruth (Cornwall);
• Redmoss (Aberdeen);
• Londonderry;
• Occombe (Devon);
• Plummers Barracks (Plymouth);
• Pearce’s Hill (Devon)

Ofcom has already given permission for Northsound 2 to switch off its AM transmitter, and Absolute Radio gained approval to close 12 transmitters (and reduce power at five others) in 2018.

Of the seven sites identified, five are in areas where Absolute Radio already switched off its service.

And just last week the BBC announced it will be closing 18 transmitters in the BBC Nations and Regions network.

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23 Comments
  1. Dave says

    If a talk station on AM has seen it, s listeners drop, I dread to think what absolute radio decline in listening must be?.
    It must be getting to the point were it, s not worth being on AM

  2. Mr Boltar says

    Everyone things MW/LW is useless – until the day they drive over to the continent and are pleasently surprised at still being able to pick up UK stations on them when the FM signal has long vanished into white noise. Until it was closed down last year the BBC Kent signal on 774 made it all the way down to Rouen and R4 LW covers half of western europe.

    1. mb23 says

      It’s easy to listen to UK stations on the continent by connecting your phone to the car audio system. There is no interference and the stations are in stereo.

      1. Stuart says

        That is easy, and cheap for the next 15 days!

        After that it could be a very expensive depending on what the mobile companies do.

        1. Stuart says

          Just checked and data roaming rules will still apply until the end of the transition period.

          So you’ve till the end of the year until listening to radio on your phone on the continent could get very expensive

          1. mb23 says

            It’s likely that the data roaming rules will continue after the end of 2020, all EEA countries are signed up to it (including Norway).

      2. Mr Boltar says

        My car is old and its ICE can’t do that. Whats your next option?

        1. Joe Smith says

          Buy a new car!

  3. Craig Chance says

    It’s getting a bit samey. Needs a complete revamp. Most shows are we past their se y date.

    1. Pat says

      what is?

  4. Pat says

    Sorry I meant to say what is the method they use for working this out-do they knock on the doors at Redruth and Inverness or do they apply for the ones where other stations have stopped broadcasting from as they can’t share the coasts anymore?,anyway it seems from this they have limited listeners in the South West of England and North East Scotland on mw.

  5. Pat says

    Sorry I meant to say what is the method they use for working this out-do they knock on the doors at Redruth and Inverness or do they apply for the ones where other stations have stopped broadcasting from as they can’t share the cost anymore?,anyway it seems from this they have limited listeners in the South West of England and North East Scotland on mw.

    1. Chris says

      I fear that the elderly will be most affected.

  6. Joe Smith says

    I solved the problem by switching off talkSPORT years ago.

  7. Scott says

    Am radio is old dead dog technology and past it sell by date. Even the BBC cant afford to keep the local radio Am Radio transmitrer going, FM DAB and online radio the future.

  8. melvyn dalley says

    Re mw ,i still tend to use AM for most stations that are on there, so much easier, batteries last many times longer, guess everything will be on the web soon ,then subscriptions may come in, and they will know whose listening. No ones every asked me what i listen to and know several who prefer analogue to digital.

    1. Scott says

      Melvyn Dalley, Did you send ofcom your email address for a survey on who listening to Am Radio, The AM Radio technology is over 100 of years old, Why flog a dead horse when listener’s are listening either online FM or digital radio. All good thing must come to end.

      1. AlMorr says

        As I said on another post, I enjoyed listening to Medium and Long Wave in the 60’s and 70’s, brought back happy memories, but I have not listened on fhose wavelengths for more than ten years, AM. RIP.

      2. Mr Boltar says

        “The AM Radio technology is over 100 of years old,”

        The wheel is about 10,000 years old – perhaps you think we should get rid of that too?

  9. Ray Woodward says

    Turn the whole ruddy lot off ..!

  10. Richard E says

    If you are on 3 Network, they had free roaming added to whatever your contract was, even on PAYG!
    This was before the EU made it compulsory! Initially it was only on 3 Networks in Europe and World Wide! They then gradually got reciprocal agreements with Non 3 networks in Europe and World Wide!
    When we leave the EU, you will still be able to stream on 3 for the same price that you pay on your contract back in the UK! So go with 3 to be able to stream your radio while abroad! I use Radio Garden app, really good! 😊

  11. Music DJ says

    It’s a real shame that DRM has never been introduced as it would be perfect for longer distance stations & in areas like Wales where FM can be a nightmare ,let alone DAB!!

  12. David says

    Things do tend to go in circles.
    The radio spectrum is limited and it used to be hard to get a “slot”.
    Case in point is the famous Radio Caroline, who pioneered the case for local radio. Being the UK’s oldest commercial radio station. Now back on Medium Wave 648kHz with 1 kw, it has got to be the only community station with such power.
    Over 50 years of service and still going strong.
    http://radiocaroline.co.uk

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