NEAR FM and FM104 have had their stolen equipment recovered by police after official pirate radio detection experts managed to locate station broadcasts in Rathfarnham, Dublin.
Other equipment relating to recent thefts at East Coast Radio and CKR FM was also discovered.
John Drummey, a former news reader with Independent Network News, has been appointed as head of news at CKR FM. John is also a former presenter with Radio Kerry. CKR FM is the licensed station serving the Carlow/Kildare franchise area.
The Keadeen Hotel in Mewbridge on Monday is the time and place where five shortlisted applicants will be given the chance to state their case for providing a radio service to the newly-created Co Kildare franchise. The five groups are:
Kildare 97FM – whose parent company are Kildare Broadcasting Corporation Ltd, comprised of Kalacastle Ltd (who operate LMFM Radio) and the Leinster Leader newspaper group;
Kildare Sound, whose parent company are Kildare Communications Ltd, of which UTV have an involvement. They promise a distinctive service catering for all the cultures and traditions found in the county, including those who have resettled from elsewhere;
KFM-Kildare Radio – whose parent company is Kildare Radio Ltd based in Carlow;
KFM – whose parent company are County Kildare FM Radio Ltd;
& Kildare’s KFM – whose parent company KFM Media Services Ltd is based in Dublin and whose investors are Dublin’s Lite Fm and Radio Kerry.
When the shortlist was announced in July, the BCI Chairman – Conor J. Maguire – said: “We are particularly pleased with the level of interest in this new franchise area and with the standard of the applications received. They were sufficiently high to warrant all applicants being invited to present at oral hearings.”
The purpose of the public hearing process is to afford an applicant group an opportunity to present its case for the licence in a public forum and to allow the Commission to clarify certain issues in an applicant’s submission. A final decision is expected in October.
KCLR 96FM, the new radio service for Carlow & Kilkenny, went live on-air for the first time at 11am today. The first presenter to be heard on the broadcast was Alan Swan, who presented a special two-hour introduction to the new station.
KCLR 96FM Chief Executive John Purcell expressed his delight that the station had finally hit the airwaves: “We applied for this new licence two years ago and it has been a long road to reach this point. The setup of the station was very challenging with preparations delayed by the legal challenges to the decision to award the licence to us. However, we are delighted to at last be on-air and are looking forward to a very positive future.”
According to Purcell, KCLR 96FM will be a fresh, local, and contemporary voice that connects with listeners across the two counties.
He said: “We are placing a huge emphasis on local events with news and sport seven days a week to ensure our listeners receive the best possible coverage of all that is happening throughout Kilkenny and Carlow. Current affairs and community interest programming are also a priority as well as quality music and entertainment shows featuring requests, competitions, and fantastic prizes.”
Purcell acknowledged that one of the main challenges for KCLR 96FM is broadcasting to two counties and said that county-specific programming is being delivered where appropriate. “We are very mindful of the fact that we are catering for two counties with diverse needs and interests and KCLR 96FM will be providing dedicated news and sports services for Carlow and Kilkenny,” he promises.
A huge amount of work had gone in to putting the station on-air and Purcell was feeling very positive about how the new service would be received.
“There has been a huge amount of interest in the new station from people throughout Carlow Kilkenny. We are determined that KCLR 96FM will be a station local people can be proud of and I am confident listeners are going to like what they hear,” he concluded.
KCLR 96FM is available in Kilkenny on 96.6MHz FM, 96.0MHz FM and 96.2MHz FM and in Carlow on 96.9MHz FM and 94.6MHz FM.