Ofcom has today announced the award of five new community radio licences in south east England.
Community radio services are provided on a not-for-profit basis, focusing on the delivery of specific social benefits to a particular geographical community or a community of interest.
Licences have been awarded to:
Bexhill FM will provide a service for the whole community in Bexhill-on-Sea, East Sussex.
Hailsham FM will be a service for the general population of Hailsham in East Sussex.
Red Kite Radio will be for the people of Haddenham (Buckinghamshire) and Thame (Oxfordshire).
Witney Radio will serve the community of Witney and surrounding villages in Oxfordshire.
Wycombe Sound is for people aged 35 and over in High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire.
A statement setting out the main determining factors for the award of the community radio licences referred to above can be found on the Ofcom website. Community radio licences are awarded for a five-year period.
Community radio, which offers thousands of volunteers the chance to get involved in broadcasting across the UK, is ten years old.
The last decade has seen the number of community radio stations increase from just a handful to more than 230 stations, each reflecting the local needs and interests of its audience.
In March, Ofcom announced its intention to simplify the way community radio stations record their Key Commitments. This revised approach reduces the administrative burden for licensees, and provides these stations greater flexibility to serve their target communities and deliver valuable social benefits.
NOTES FOR EDITORS
1. In addition to the licence awards detailed above, Ofcom considered one further application, but decided not to award a licence to the following group:
2. Applications for community radio licences are being invited on a region-by-region basis. Further details can be found on the Ofcom website.