8/98 3 February 1998

RADIO AUTHORITY RECEIVES EIGHT APPLICATIONS FOR NEW SMALL-SCALE LOCAL LICENCES IN LEICESTERSHIRE

The Radio Authority's closing date for receipt of applications for the new small-scale Independent Local Radio (ILR) licences in Leicestershire was today (3 February). The Authority anticipates making available a maximum of two frequencies although it reserves the right to exceed this number if it believes this would be justified.

Each licence is being offered for the provision of a small-scale service on the FM waveband to cover a location (or contiguous locations) within the county of Leicestershire including the unitary authority area of Rutland except for the city of Leicester and its immediate surrounds.

It is the Authority's intention on this occasion to encourage the development of localised radio services in areas other than the main city where the existing ILR licensees are based or otherwise to broaden the range of ILR choice in such areas. The Authority's coverage brief stated that some overspill of coverage into communities lying immediately beyond the Leicestershire county boundary would be acceptable.

Eight applications have been submitted. The details of those applying are listed below together with a brief outline of each applicant's preferred coverage area(s) and proposed programme format(s):

  • THE BIG DIAL RADIO CO. LTD. - P.O. Box 1058 Market Harborough LE16 7DR (contact: Philip Solo or Roger Dunton 01858 432000) a distinctive locally focused 24-hour radio station to involve Leicestershire communities combining a mixture of classic 60s to 90s hits melodic contemporary vocal and some current chart music with first class news and information services covering South East Leicestershire including Market Harborough and surrounding villages;
  • CROSS COUNTIES RADIO (HINCKLEY & NUNEATON) LTD. - Creative Media Communications Ltd. 11 Newtown Road Nuneaton Warwickshire CV11 4HP (contact: Peter Young 1203 353534 or David Harris-Boulter 1203 320106 familiar hits from the 60s 70 80 and 90 with speech focusing specifically on the communities of Hinckley (including Barwell Earl Shilton Burbage and Sapcote) plus Nuneaton and surrounding areas delivered with a familiarity of the area;
  • FOSSEWAY RADIO LTD. - P.O. Box 107 Hinckley LE10 1WR (contact: Andrew Carter 1455 614151 or Michael Betton 1522 549900 a truly local radio service for South-West Leicestershire including the market towns of Hinckley and Market Bosworth providing a comprehensive news and information service alongside a broad blend of quality music;
  • HFM RADIO LTD. - P.O. Box 1055 Market Harborough LE16 7ZL (contact: Barry Badger 1858 466984 or Robert Scott 1908 618625 a mix of music ranging from the 60s to the 90s with occasional 40 and 50s (catering for all ages) together with lively yet informative chat full coverage of local national and international news current affairs local sport traffic travel and weather covering Market Harborough Lutterworth Kibworth Great Glen and Desborough;
  • OAK FM LTD. - 18 Jubilee Drive Belton Park Loughborough LE11 5TQ (contact; Kel Prince or Robert Curtis 1509 232632 a lively music-led station whose highly-focused local service of news current affairs coverage information and community involvement will be the authentic voice of Loughborough the largest town in Leicestershire the Charnwood area and neighbouring parts of North West Leicestershire;
  • RUTLAND RADIO LTD. - RBCC Knights Yard Gaol Street Oakham Rutland LE15 6AQ (contact: Andrew Carter 1572 757868 or Michael Betton 1522 549900 high quality melodic music aimed at a mature audience with a responsible and intelligent news and information service reflecting the views and interests of the county of Rutland and the neighbouring town of Stamford;
  • SWELL FM (HINCKLEY BROADCASTING CO. LTD.) - Brunel Road Hinckley LE10 0AB (contact: Barry Hunt 1455 894040 or Tom Beesley 115 9455119 a lively music-led station whose highly-focused local service of news current affairs coverage information and community involvement will be the authentic voice of South West Leicestershire and Nuneaton. From its Hinckley base Swell FM will offer a service to listeners in the Hinckley and Bosworth district council area to nearby communities in the adjoining Blaby and Harborough administrative areas and also to Hinckley's closest neighbour Nuneaton just over the Warwickshire border;
  • WELLAND FM LTD. - The Buttercups Stablegate Way Market Harborough LE16 7FA (contact: David Naylor or Jonathan Surridge 1858 465252 24 hours a day local news information and your favourite music for South-East Leicestershire and the Welland Valley serving the district of Harborough and immediate vicinity including rural parts of northern Northamptonshire.
  • This 'alternative location' (or 'sally') approach has been adopted by the Authority in several areas previously (see Note 1 for a fuller explanation of the 'sally' licensing procedure).

    Copies of these applications will be available for public scrutiny in the reference sections of the public libraries in Hinckley Loughborough Market Harborough (Pen Lloyd Library) and Oakham and at the Radio Authority's headquarters in London. The Authority welcomes public comments on the proposals put forward by the applicants and upon the tastes and requirements of listeners in their target coverage areas. These should be sent to the Head of Development Radio Authority Holbrook House 14 Great Queen Street London WC2B 5DG to arrive by 27 April 1998.

    The Authority hopes to announce its decision about the award of the licences in the early summer.

    ENDS

    NOTES TO EDITORS

    1. Small-scale 'alternative location' local licences often known by the acronym 'sallies' reflect an Authority policy introduced in 1996 whereby the availability of one or more frequencies for a service (or services) for any locality (or in different localities where more than one frequency is available) within a wider area will be advertised without specifying which particular locality at the time of the advertisement. It is up to the applicants to decide which locality they with to serve. this approach is designed to increase the opportunities for prospective operators of small-scale radio services to submit licence applications.
    2. The Radio Authority is responsible for licensing and regulating Independent Radio in accordance with the statutory requirements of the Broadcasting Acts 1990 and 1996. It plans frequencies awards licences regulates programming and advertising and plays an active role in the discussion and formulation of policies which affect the Independent Radio industry and its listeners.

    Contact: Tracey Mullins 0171 405 7058
    Press and Information Office 0171 430 2724
    Out of Hours 0370 375283