Radiowaves News first appeared live in January 2000. The site’s news has been archived since then. However, there are also pages that have been created retrospectively in order to give a feel for the news as it happened. This is one of them…all sources are credited.22nd: Big rise in profits for Radio Tara – The Irish Times
Radiowaves News first appeared live in January 2000. The site’s news has been archived since then. However, there are also pages that have been created retrospectively in order to give a feel for the news as it happened. This is one of them…all sources are credited.19th: Dubliner selected for top UK radio position – The Irish Times 22nd: Radio station making waves – The Irish Times
Radio Valleri, the 1970s Dublin pirate whose first shortwave broadcast was on 6317kHz in October 1973, is planning a return to SW in the near future, Radiowaves is delighted to reveal. This will be a major boost for aging anoraks, overseas Dublin radio listeners and those with shortwave receivers. It will be operated by the original Radio Valleri crew: namely Derek Jones (presently on air on Radio Caroline Dublin every Sunday morning) and Mike Anderson.
Radio Valleri have set up an email address for anybody wishing to write requesting information and details about their planned relaunch. Obviously good luck messages are also welcomed at email@example.com
Atlantic 252, Ireland’s long wave station, have had their licence renewed for another 8 years. News that’s bound to make somebody’s day!
Atlantic 252, Ireland’s long wave station, have had their licence renewed for another 8 years. News that’s bound to make somebody’s day!
Atlantic 252’s managing-director John O’Hara has been given the green light by parent company CLT-UFA to kick-start a £1 million marketing push to restore the youth-oriented station to its former glory. Atlantic’s website is due to launch on October 1st and they hope to have re-established themselves in the “hearts and minds” of their 15-34 year old audience by then.
TalkSport in the UK are claiming a first with the novel idea of inviting listeners to record audio email messages through their website to be sent to the station for later broadcast.
Atlantic 252 have appointed e-business consultancy E-Marketing to develop its new website which they hope will be the most innovative radio station website ever created. A live stream will also be available.
The long wave station, which is based in Co Meath, is about to announce details of it’s £1m marketing push, and all of this follows a 20% audience increase since its new schedule launch in January.
The site is due for official launch on October 1st.
Ozone Radio, the shortwave pirate station based in Dublin, may be leaving the airwaves within a month owing to a lack of interest from listeners, according to SRSnews.
Station controller Prince Terry has been making on-air statements regarding lack of interest, in particular very few letters.
Ozone Radio has been on air for 3 decades and was formerly known as Westside Radio.
The station broadcasts on Sunday mornings usually from about 8am and carries a deferred relay of Phantom FM’s ‘The Anorak Hour’.
James Stafford of Century Radio has denied that he ever pushed for RTÉ Radio 2 to be closed down.
Stafford said at the Flood Tribunal today that it was his view that RTÉ Radio 2 should be closed as it was using the RTÉ licence fee to sell below-cost advertising to stifle competition.
Capital Radio in London, which took a stake in Century, also believed it should be closed.
But, he said, it was never a requirement, and it was not included in the 1990 legislation.
Today FM, Ireland’s independent national radio service, want to sign Ray D’Arcy to present a morning programme on the station.
Atlantic 252 – the long wave station broadcasting to the UK and Ireland – have put up a temporary page at their website where listeners can tune in on the internet. Atlantic’s website is due for a full launch at the beginning of October. The address is www.atlantic252.com.
BBC Radio 1’s sentimental feature “Our Tune” will be on TV on Sky One from next month. Simon Bates – the man who made it a ‘must-weep’ feature for millions of listeners – will present.
RTÉ Radio, Today FM and just about every other station in the country are claiming that more and more people are tuning their way. It can only mean today’s release of the JNLR figures covering the period July 99 – June 2000. Countrywide, yesterday RTÉ Radio 1 are getting 30%, 2FM 28% and Today FM 14%. In Dublin RTÉ Radio 1 are pulling in 40% of listeners with 16% each for 2FM, FM104 and 98FM. Overall the RTÉ stations are getting a 49% share and the independents 51%.
Comment: Such a shame that the pirates aren’t included. It would be nice to have a true reflection of who’s listening to what and it might also put an end to the whole ESG v Hot debate currently boring everyone to tears on bulletin boards.
RTÉ Radio 1 plan to broadcast reenactments of tribunals as a stand-alone programme in their peak evening slot. Proving very popular with listeners, reenactments have already featured as part of the channel’s 7pm show “Tonight With Vincent Browne” but this programme will no longer be a part of radio schedules as its host is moving to television.
BBC Radio 1’s Simon Mayo show can once again be heard crystal clear on Dublin’s FM band courtesy of Freedom 92FM. In addition to Radio 1’s breakfast show, Freedom have extended relays of the UK national pop channel until 12 midday.
2FM is being relayed on 6220kHz on the shortwave band (monitored with a very good signal in Scotland). This frequency has most recently been used by Laser Hot Hits.
Source Alex Jenkins
Today FM introduced a ‘new face on the radio’ today in the form of Ray D’Arcy (but no Zig and Zag!) presenting the first of his daily shows at 10am. A slight reshuffle sees Tim Kelly moved to the afternoon slot while Philip Cawley is on holidays, and with Ian Dempsey back from his latest vacation, Today FM are hoping that the new look schedule will grab them a further increase in audience share on the back of the recent JNLR figures.
BBC Five Live have stopped broadcasting in analogue via the Astra satellite at 19.2E due to broadcasting rights restrictions.
The Irish cable service from ntl has also been affected. A company representative for ntl has said that they hope to restore the channel soon – even though he needed to be informed that Five Live was a radio – not a tv – channel and that it was offered as part of their service.
Five Live is encrypted on Sky Digital but can be received on 990kHz, 909kHz and 693kHz on medium wave in many parts of Ireland.
ntl are now admitting that they might have problems carrying Five Live in the future as a result of sports broadcasting rights restrictions which prevent the station broadcasting outside of the UK.
Five Live has been removed from analogue satellite and, as a consequence, from ntl.
The station is encrypted on the Sky Digital platform and available to UK listeners only.
Listeners in Ireland can now only tune in on medium wave.
Comment: Although ntl are not at fault it might be worth letting them know that you want Five Live as part of your cable service. Customer service: 1800 123123 or fill in the customer care form on their website.
Ireland could be home to Europe’s first gay radio station next year. Australian businessman Dr Austen James wants the station to be run entirely by gays but will settle for “people who live on the edge” if equality laws don’t permit it. The station hopes to beam it’s signal across Europe and plans are subject to the station receiving a licence.
James Stafford, the former director of Century Radio, has been accused of lying to the Flood Tribunal. Denying the allegation, Mr Stafford claimed that comments he made during a private interview were misinterpreted.
The tribunal heard that Mr Stafford said that he first heard about the now infamous payment to Ray Burke when he read about it in press reports earlier this year but later said in evidence that he had heard about it back in 1991. At that point, Oliver Barry claimed that he was owed money for the payment he made to Ray Burke. James Stafford said that was the first time he heard about it. However, tribunal lawyers have uncovered documents which reveal that Oliver Barry was refunded the payment after the London based Capital Radio took a stake in the station, and that James Stafford helped him to do this.
Atlantic 252 are about to launch a new £1m promotional campaign aimed at their 15-24 year old target audience. Entitled “Dance Your Tits Off”, the campaign will feature naked male model torsos with plasters over their nipples in an attempt to encourage more interest from dance music followers.
Atlantic 252 broadcast to Ireland and the UK on the long wave band.
Atlantic 252’s new website is currently at the testing stage and the plan is for it to go live on October 16th. The site was originally due for relaunch on October 1st. Atlantic 252 can be heard across the British Isles on the long wave band or by visiting their webpage.
Gay Byrne today gave evidence at the Flood Tribunal. He told the court that Oliver Barry arrived at his home in Howth with a cheque for £1m as a downpayment for joining Century Radio. He declined the offer because he didn’t want to be seen as “muggins the frontman” for the new station. He said that he was nervous that the station owners had placed so much emphasis on having him on board and feared that he would be first to be criticised should the station fail.
An official from the Bank of Ireland has told the Flood Tribunal that Century Radio would have been considered by his company to be “a lost cause” but for the promised legislation to cap RTE’s advertising revenue. Century was using the pending legislation to buy time, he said.
Atlantic 252 have shown an increase in the latest release of RAJAR figures. The station have attracted 50,000 new listeners – an increase of 4%. Atlantic 252 broadcast to the UK and Ireland on 252kHz long wave.
RTE’s dealings with Century Radio, and the cap on it’s advertising rates, cost the station approximately £20m, RTE’s chief financial officer Gerry O’Brien claimed today at The Flood Tribunal.
Century Radio were almost stopped from going on air, the Tribunal heard today. The chairman of the Independent Radio and Television Commission (IRTC), Mr Justice Henchy rang Century the day before it was due on air and warned them that their failure to provide Irish language programming was against the terms of their licence and they would be stopped from broadcasting.
Also today, former members of the IRTC said that they were ‘taken aback’ at the amount of £1.1m that RTE were seeking for providing transmission facilities for Century Radio. Fred O’Donovan said that he thought that the amount was ridiculous.
All of the IRTC members so far questioned have also indicated that the then Minister for Communications, Ray Burke, never interfered in the selection process nor were they ever canvassed by Century Radio for their vote.
Mr Fred O’Donovan, former IRTC member, said that more than 1000 applications were received for licences but most were from ‘headcases’! “Many of the applications were from accountants who, in my opinion, came from the Hans Christian Anderson school of economics – they were crazy”, he said. Four applications were received for the national licence and after discussions, 80-90% of members favoured the Century proposal.
RTE presenter Uaneen Fitzsimons was killed in a car accident at around 1pm this afternoon near Borris-in-Ossory in Co Laois. The accident happened when the car in which she was a passenger collided with an articulated lorry. The car’s driver, a 30 year old man, was taken to Portlaoise hospital. Uaneen was returning from a music bash in Limerick and would have travelled by train, but for a countrywide rail strike. She was 29 years old and presented ‘No Disco’ on Network Two and a late-night programme on 2FM. Her hometown was Co Down and her distinctive voice and presentation style brought pleasure to radio listeners all over the country. Uaneen was due on air on 2FM tonight at 11pm. As a tribute, the station will now broadcast concerts from her three favourite bands:- Beck (Witness), Moby (Slane) and Radiohead. There is also a book of condolences at RTE’s website – www.rte.ie. Comment: Our deepest sympathies go to friends and family.
A secret application by Century Radio for one of the Dublin radio licences was fronted by businessman, Mr Paschal Taggart, the Tribunal heard today. Century Radio was an applicant for the national licence in 1988 but decided to also apply for a Dublin licence and commissioned Mr Taggart to draw up a business plan and file an application in the name of Dublin One Radio Ltd. Mr James Stafford of Century has told the Tribunal that his involvement in the Dublin application was not disclosed because it might have affected the chances of getting the national licence. According to Mr Taggart, Century co-founder, Mr Oliver Barry, asked him to front the application for the Dublin licence. Later disagreements between the two men over finances led to the application being scrapped and it was never submitted to the IRTC. Mr Taggart also said that he had never been approached to pay money for a licence nor was he aware of rumours that money was being sought for licences.
Also today, it was revealed by Ms Noreen Hynes, formerly of Century, that the station’s finances were so bad by the time it launched in September 1989 that their launch party needed to be scaled down. “Century could not afford an elaborate celebration”, she said. Ms Hynes also revealed that a sum of £26,250 was never explained to her despite being listed as an expense in Century’s accounts. In earlier evidence, however, it emerged that the sum consisted of £21,250 invested in the secret Dublin radio licence bid and a £5,000 donation to Fianna Fail.
Century Radio have asked the Flood Tribunal to seek out a report carried out in the eighties for RTE which is believed to have estimated that they had at least 200 too many staff. Century hope to use the information to establish that the transmission charges set by RTE were based on an inflated cost structure. RTE dropped it’s initial asking price of £1.14m in two stages to less than £400,000 after interventions by Ray Burke.
Source: Sunday Business Post
Simon Mayo is leaving BBC Radio 1 in February to join BBC Five Live, it was announced today. He will present his farewell show on February 16 and begin broadcasting an afternoon current affairs show on Five Live in May. Simon, aged 42, has been with Radio 1 since 1986 and in that time presented the Breakfast Show for five years and has been in his current mid-morning slot for seven. As a result, the existing daytime presenters on Radio 1 will mostly have an hour added to their show. The new schedule, operational from Monday February 19th 2001, will see Scott Mills given an extra half-hour, finishing at 7am. The Breakfast Show with Sara Cox will be extended to three hours between 7am and 10am. Jo Whiley will move from her lunchtime slot to 10am followed by Mark ‘n’ Lard skinning the competition (ALIVE!) from 1pm. Chris Moyles will start an hour earlier at 3pm and the lunchtime ‘Newsbeat’ will move to 12.45pm. Present afternoon FiveLive presenter Ian Payne will be moved to the evening show ‘Sport on 5’.
The first in a series of commemorative events in honour of Uaneen Fitzsimons, the RTE radio and TV presenter killed in a road accident last week, will take place tomorrow night at the Temple Bar Music Centre in Dublin at 11pm.
The event will feature “The Sound In A Light Year” a film by Donal Dineen plus DJs: Johnny Moy, Donal Scannell, Billy Scurry, Hugh Scully, Glen Brady and Philip Boyle.
All proceeds will go to one of Uaneen’s favourite charities.
Mr Patrick Taylor, former finance director of the UK’s Capital Radio who invested over £1m in Century Radio, said today that it was suggested to him that former Communications Minister Ray Burke was paid £35,000 by Oliver Barry, Century’s co-founder, in return for placing a cap on RTÉ’s advertising revenue.
The suggestion was made to him by Mr James Stafford, also co-founder of Century, in late 1991.
Mr Taylor also told the Tribunal that he was unaware that Mr John Mulhern, son-in-law of Charles Haughey, was an investor in Century Radio. It was not disclosed in the legal documents drawn up at the time of Capital’s investment in the station, he said.
In other evidence given today, Mr Paddy Corbett (Manager of Bank of Ireland, O’Connell Street) agreed that words recorded in an internal bank memo to the effect that Mr Oliver Barry had used his ‘political clout to get…a level playing field’ – referring to the cap on RTÉ’s advertising – were his, but he had no recollection of saying it.
Mr Séamus O’Neill, former marketing director of Century Radio, said that he had sold advertising prior to the station’s launch on the basis that the signal would reach 60% of the country on it’s first day of broadcasting and that it should not have launched, because at that point, only 45% of the country could receive the station. He had never been shown RTÉ’s transmission document which stated that it would take nine months before this level of coverage could be reached. This led to advertisers cancelling orders and it became difficult to get new business, he added.
Both BBC Five Live and WRN have been restored to NTL’s cable network in Dublin. Five Live can be heard through NTL on 95.1MHz whilst WRN is tuneable on 102.7MHz.
Meanwhile, as a result, WXTC have confirmed that their relay of BBC Five Live will resume this evening following their own live programming and they plan to relay the British network as much as possible during the run-in to the UK general election.
Leeds-based Teamtalk Media Group has won the bidding auction to buy long wave station Atlantic 252, according to today’s Irish Independent. Teamtalk provides internet information services about English football clubs.
Atlantic 252, which is based in Meath, had previously been linked to a possible deal with Oneword radio station but the deal fell through.
TEAMtalk Media Group plc has today entered into discussions with RTL Group to acquire 80% of Radio Tara Ltd, which operates the national long wave radio station Atlantic 252, for total cash consideration of £2 million.
Completion of the deal is anticipated by the end of next month. The remaining 20% of Radio Tara will continue to be held by RTE, the Irish public service broadcasting organisation.
The acquisition continues TEAMtalk’s drive to broaden its content delivery base by creating an additional platform for the distribution of TEAMtalk sports content. TEAMtalk intends to rebrand the station as TEAMtalk 252 and relaunch it as a predominantly sports-based station by the end of the financial year. The station will continue to broadcast from Radio Tara’s facilities in Ireland to a UK audience on Long Wave 252.
This is the third radio acquisition that TEAMtalk has made this year. In February, the media group acquired MMC Sport-Redaktion, the largest independent sports radio programmer in Germany, which supplies over 200 radio stations across Germany, Austria and Switzerland. This was followed by the acquisition in June of Hampson Radio, the leading UK in-store radio broadcaster with customers such as Asda and Moto. TEAMtalk also produces over 330 hours of sports audio in the UK, including a nine hour daily radio programme for Ladbrokes.
Bill Wilson, Chairman & Chief Executive, of TEAMtalk, said: “This acquisition presents a win-win situation for us. As I have said in the past, TEAMtalk is about building an independent content generation machine that can create revenues from as many distribution platforms as possible. When the station is launched we will have a national radio presence that and I am looking forward to driving the new format in the UK marketplace.”
Atlantic 252 is no more. Following on from the final live programming from the station just befpre Christmas, the automated music programming ceased at midnight last night and has been replaced with promotional programming for TeamTalk Radio – which is due to launch on 252kHz long wave on February 25th.
Two of three complaints by listeners against national UK station TalkSport have been upheld. The UK’s Radio Authority reprimanded the talk station for an item on their Breakfast Show in which Turkish people were described as being “barbaric”. Despite a claim that the word was used in the context of Galatasaray football supporters, the Radio Authority upheld the complaint.
TalkSport’s FA Cup commentaries were described by the station as being “exclusive”, even though they are anything but! The station’s claim that they meant exclusive in the sense of style and presentation rather than the competition itself was, not surprisingly, rejected, although the complaint was only partially upheld by the Radio Authority.
Not upheld was the complaint by a listener that the station was “plain boring”! The Radio Authority admitted that it was not within their powers to reprimand any station for being boring.
Source: Media Guardian
After five years, the Flood Tribunal has released its interim report. There were a number of key points concerning Century Radio, the national station which was awarded a licence in 1989 but lasted only two years on air.
Justice Flood has found that a £35,000 payment to then minister for communications Ray Burke by Century Radio owner Oliver Barry on 26th May 1989, was a corrupt payment and was not intended by Barry to be a political donation to Burke or to Fianna Fáil. This followed the award of the new national licence to Century.
It was also found that a ministerial directive obliging RTÉ to provide its facilities to Century, issued by Burke on March 14th, 1989, was issued to advance the private interests of the promoters of Century and not to serve the public interest.
Further, in proposing legislation which would have had the effect of curbing RTÉ’s advertising, altering the format of 2FM, and diverting broadcasting licence fee income from RTÉ to independent broadcasters, Burke was acting in response to demands made of him by the promoters of Century and was not serving the public interest.
The payment of £35,000 to Ray Burke by Oliver Barry ensured that he was available to serve the interests of Century’s promoters, as is evidenced by his willingness to meet with their bankers and to give them assurances that he would take steps, including, if necessary, the introduction of legislation which would be to Century’s financial benefit.
Eamon Dunphy has announced that he is to quit his Today FM show ‘The Last Word’.
It is believed that Dunphy will continue to present the show until the end of November. Although he has stated that he will be leaving Today FM on good terms, insiders suggest that Dunphy was not happy that approaches were made to Charlie Bird of RTÉ to front the show before the station agreed to a new €400,000 per year contract in the summer. It is most likely, however, that his punishing work schedule contributed to the decision. Dunphy is said to be in talks with TV Three about presenting a new Friday night chat show.
A news item on RTÉ Radio 1’s flagship Five Seven Live news programme threw the studio into chaos when the newsreader told listeners that she had almost said a rude word during the piece – and then went on to tell listeners what the word was!
Traffic chaos caused by a sheep and horse fair in Connemara was the subject of a report by newsreader Frances Shanaghan. Connemara is so remote it is not usually in the news as a result of traffic. So Frances felt she should inform listeners that the item was genuine. She said: “Before you think i’m taking the …”, but realising she was live on air, she stopped herself just before finishing the sentence. However, she then went on to say: “I was going to say ‘taking the piss’ but I won’t.” Main presenter Rachael English collapsed in a fit of giggles and the sports reporter who was on next had trouble delivering his bulletin.
Chris Moyles has been rapped by his BBC Radio 1 bosses for threatening a rival presenter on his afternoon show. Moyles called Capital FM’s Neil Fox an “ego on legs” and warned: “I’m going to rip that guy a brand new hole. I’m gonna tear his head off and poo down his neck.”
The outburst was a reaction to an article in The Sun where Fox said he would love to get into a ‘Celebrity Boxing’ ring with Moyles and ‘knock his fat face off’.
Although BBC bosses accepted that the item was humourous, they believed Moyles had gone too far.
The chief executives of two of the country’s top radio stations have spoken out against EMI/Virgin Records for their part in releasing an album in association with Dublin pirate station Phantom FM.
The Dublin rock station recently released ‘Phantom Vol 1’ but in the current issue of Hot Press, Willie O’Reilly of Today FM expresses his disappointment that the record company would become associated with an illegal broadcaster.
He says: “I wonder how the artists feel about copyright infringement. We pay about 15% of our gross income to record companies for the use of their stuff. Phantom pay nothing.”
Although O’Reilly admits that [Phantom] should be licensed, he states that that isn’t the issue here. “The issue is that they aren’t licensed. They have pretty dirty hands because they came off the air to apply for a licence and when they didn’t get it, they went back on.”
FM104’s Dermot Hanrahan is even more scathing in his criticism. Directly addressing the record company, he says: “You’ve no moral authority to be dealing with piracy of music if you support criminal broadcasters.”
He suggests that artists involved with the album would not receive future airplay on FM104. “I don’t see that bands can still expect me to play their music if they associate themselves with criminal broadcasters.”
There are suggestions that the ODTR could come down heavy on EMI for their involvement, but in their defence, a spokesperson for the record company says that Phantom FM is not mentioned anywhere on the sleeve. Although the sleeve does refer to the station’s website phantomfm.com, “that is an internet station which is not illegal”, the spokesperson says.
Dustin, Ireland’s most famous turkey, has proved immensely popular with listeners to Sara Cox’s BBC Radio 1 Breakfast Show. The part-time politician, builder, movie-star and entertainer this week presented a series of short pieces entitled “A Turkey’s Guide to Surviving Christmas”.
It all came about as a result of an email just three weeks ago from an ex-pat Irish listener who said the thing he missed most about Ireland was Dustin the Turkey. After reading out the email, Sara’s team were flooded by texts and emails from Irish listeners who left the show’s research team in no doubt about Dustin’s popularity.
A spokesman for the Breakfast Show told the Evening Herald this week that they’d never seen anything like it!
Today FM bosses have axed Ian Noctor’s Sunday night Dad Rock show. Dad Rock features classic rock tunes from the ’60s and ’70s but station bosses are said to be unhappy with the size of the niche audience it attracts, and will launch an indie rock show in its place to regain listeners lost to pirate stations like Phantom FM and XFM.
Dad Rock has been on air since 1999. Ian Noctor has been presenting the show for just over a year, Marty Miller presented it previously. Ian Noctor is said to be so devastated with the news that he opted out of presenting the final two shows, the first of which was last Sunday. Cliff Walker has taken Ian’s place and will present a special finale this Sunday evening.
Aidan Dunne has resigned as Chief Executive at NewsTalk 106FM. This is the second Chief Executive the Dublin talk station have lost in their 17 months on air. 98FM chief Dan Healy will take over the role with almost inmmediate effect. He will be replaced at 98FM by the station’s marketing manager Ciaran Davis.
NewsTalk 106FM have announced that they will raise €2.5m from the station’s shareholders over the next few months. This is expected to fund a new marketing drive as well as ongoing operational costs.
Chris Moyles will take over BBC Radio 1’s Breakfast Show from early next year. Current presenter Sara Cox will be shifted to Moyles’ afternoon slot in the wake of disastrous ratings. Andy Parfitt, the station’s Controller, expressed his delight that Moyles has agreed to present the show, adding that the controversial presenter was the first – and only – choice.
National arts station Lyric FM have announced some changes to their schedule. The RTÉ-run station which is based in Limerick are introducing new programmes, new faces, and are changing presenters on established programmes starting from tomorrow.
At 10am on Saturdays the first of the new faces, Ian Fox, presents The Lyric Collection in which he helps listeners assemble a classical library collection to suit their own interests.
Later at 11am, another new presenter to Lyric FM George Hamilton brings you his selection of the classics with a new programme called The Hamilton Scores George’s Selections.
Sound FX on a Saturday morning becomes Soundings on a Sunday evening, presented by Bernard Clarke at 8pm.
Horizons returns at a new time of 9.30pm each Sunday evening when Bernard Clarke will be looking at New Music stories from home and abroad.
Presenters on the move include:- Seán Rocks to Lunchtime Choice (Mon-Sat, 12.30pm); Evelyn Grant is the new presenter of Sunday’s Lunchtime Choice (12.30pm); Liz Nolan is the new presenter of the Lyric Pitch (Saturday, 4pm); Eamonn Lenihan is the new presenter of Jazz Alley on Sunday (7pm); Carl Corcoran is the new presenter of Lyric Breakfast (Mon-Fri, 7am); Niall Carroll is the new presenter of Drivetime Classics (Mon-Fri, 5pm); Denis Costello is the new presenter of the Lyric Concerts (Mon-Thurs, 9pm).
Another young talent will shortly be introduced to listeners of RTÉ’s national music station 2FM. Nikki Hayes has been lined up to present ‘The Cruise’ for eight weeks starting from 9th November. The show runs from 6-8pm each Sunday and has, until now, been presented by Aidan Leonard who is on the move to RTÉ Radio 1.
Nikki’s shows on 2FM will not affect her present slot on Dublin youth station Spin 1038 where she appears nightly with Spin Shift.
Excited by the chance to broadcast to a national audience, Nikki told Radiowaves News today that this is a dream come true for her.
The Cruise will be of a similar laid-back style to her offering on Spin 1038.
2FM’s schedule has undergone a total revamp in recent months, and in tandem with a shift in broadcast times for a lot of the station’s established stars, many young newly-signed presenters are slowly establishing themselves on the station.
‘Big Ron’ Atkinson has signed up as a football pundit on ‘The Right Hook’ for NewsTalk 106. Atkinson is one of English football’s more colourful characters, but it was an unfortunate incident relating to colour that lost him his similar, mega-bucks job with ITV Sport. Atkinson was overheard referring to a Chelsea player as a ‘f**king lazy, thick ni**er’ when he thought his comments were not being broadcast. Unfortunately for him, the mic was still open and the comments were carried live by several tv stations around the world who were relying on ITV for their pictures. Atkinson has since apologised, but was widely condemned for the remarks, and led to him resigning his post at ITV, as well as a columnist job with The Guardian newspaper.
Atkinson will be employed as a stand-in for Eamon Dunphy when the station’s breakfast presenter is not available.
NewsTalk 106 have been told that their live coverage of Glasgow Celtic’s football matches are in breach of contract rights. The station were broadcasting the Scottish team’s Saturday afternoon matches based on an agreement with the club itself. However, the broadcast rights for individual clubs are held collectively by the game’s governing body, who contacted the Dublin station and advised them to stop. This was based on a complaint from another radio station.
NewsTalk 106 have been brought to task in the past for unofficial coverage of Irish league matches. Their Sunday and Monday night coverage of The Premiership remains unaffected. This agreement allows NewsTalk 106 to relay BBC Radio 5 Live’s match coverage to Dublin FM audiences. Unfortunately for NewsTalk, Five Live’s comprehensive sporting coverage leads to many broken points in the live commentary when the BBC goes elsewhere for updates or live broadcasts of other events.
Marian Finucane is giving up her morning programme with RTÉ Radio 1. Marian has revealed that her hour-long morning show will cease when it stops for next year’s summer break. This will give her the freedom to pursue other radio projects for the station. She has given no details of this new arrangement, except to say that there have been ideas in her head for eleven years.
Recent speculation suggested that RTÉ would be dropping her show in the new year, whilst other reports suggested that she would be moving to Dublin station NewsTalk 106FM.
John Peel is dead at the age of 65. The legendary Liverpool-born broadcaster died last night after suffering from a heart attack. He was on a working holiday in South America when the tragedy struck. The radio and music world is in a state of shock today as everybody he ever touched tries to come to terms with the news.
Tributes have been received from far and wide for one of the original voices of BBC Radio 1. Even in his latter years John retained an infectious enthusiasm for new sounds, and new talent. His dry wit has caused many a smile, his endorsement has launched many a career. Although he’d reached retirement age, only his passing away could force his retirement from the airwaves. John’s late night shows on BBC Radio 1 were compulsive listening for fans worldwide. They also attracted the station’s largest percentage of under 15 years of age listenership. Peel was so highly thought of at the BBC that he virtually just had to ask and his show-times were changed to suit his lifestyle.
Andy Parfitt, BBC Radio 1’s controller, has called Peel’s contribution to modern music and culture ‘immeasurable’.
He added: “John Peel was a broadcasting legend. I am deeply saddened by his death as are all who work at Radio 1. Hopeful bands all over the world sent their demo tapes to John knowing that he really cared. His commitment and passion for new music only grew stronger over the years. In fact, when I last saw him he was engaged in a lively debate with his fellow DJs over the state of new music today. He will be hugely missed.”
Peel was admired and loved by his peers. BBC Radio 2 presenter Mark Radcliffe says that Peel inspired him to become a dj.
“He was someone with a warmth and honesty who really loved music, rather than someone who wanted to be a famous DJ,” Radcliffe said. “John showed that it was possible to be a broadcaster on a national radio station and still be yourself. He was a maverick and a peer, and a role model for so many of us.”
Fellow Radio 1 presenter Jo Whiley continued a theme: “John was simply one of my favourite men in the whole world – as a music fan and presenter he was simply an inspiration.”
BBC Director of Radio & Music Jenny Abramsky said: “John Peel was a unique broadcaster whose influence on Radio 1 could be felt from its very first days. He nurtured musicians and listeners alike introducing them to new sounds. His open-minded approach to music was mirrored by his equally generous approach to his audience when he went to Radio 4 to present Home Truths. He had a remarkable rapport with all his listeners. Everyone at BBC Radio is devasted by the news. John is simply irreplaceable.”
The BBC’s Director-General Mark Thompson said: “We are all very shocked and saddened by the news of John’s death. He was one of the giants of radio and will be missed, not just by everyone at the BBC, but by millions of listeners of all ages.”
John Peel also presented shows for BBC Radio 4 and the World Service in recent times, and worked on US radio in the ’60s. John’s death has left a huge void in broadcasting which will never again be filled. The world is a sadder place today.
Note: BBC Radio 1 will run the following tribute programmes…
Tonight Steve Lamacq will celebrate John’s life from 11pm to 1am.
Tomorrow night Mary Anne Hobbs will continue the tribute from 11pm to 1am.
And on Thursday, also from 11pm to 1am, Steve Lamacq will look back at John’s life and talk to people he has influenced over the years.
Listeners to RTÉ Radio 1’s Liveline show were stunned yesterday when a hoax caller managed to suggest that minister Martin Cullen’s PR advisor Monica Leech must be ‘sucking his c**k’ to earn the €120,000 a year he’s paying her from government funds.
The caller to the afternoon phone-in show presented by Joe Duffy identified himself as ‘Norman’, a member of the Progressive Democrats.
Debate had been raging on the show with many listeners critical of the amount of money being paid. However, ‘Norman’ took the debate to another level when he first suggested that Leech was not being overpaid at all. Duffy asked him to justify the remarks but wasn’t prepared for the response he got.
‘Norman’ offered the view that maybe she’s been doing other things besides the constituency work. When he became more specific, Duffy instantly stopped the call and went to a commercial break.
Today’s Liveline contained an unreserved apology but it may not prevent a massive libel case against RTÉ.
RTÉ’s Joe Duffy has criticised Bono’s performance as guest editor of BBC Radio 4’s ‘Today’ programme earlier this week. The presenter of Radio 1’s Liveline programme called the U2 lead singer “boring” and “too wrapped up in himself” in his Ireland on Sunday column published today. Duffy feels that Bono made a ‘dog’s dinner’ of producing the programme, which went out just two days after the tsunami disaster which struck South-East Asia last weekend. He claims that Bono allowed his ‘old-pals club’ to spend time offering devotion to Bono and themselves, rather than devoting time to dealing with the disaster which has laid the planet’s population grief-stricken.
Duffy was also critical of an item Bono produced suggesting that the Irish are descended from Arabs rather than the Celts. Considering the events in Asia, Duffy questions whether anyone cares whether Bono is a Celt or an Arab.
At the same time Duffy was full of praise for Pat Kenny, his colleague at Radio 1, for his treatment of the tsunami disaster. He called Kenny’s show “a masterclass of sensitivity and production”.
Marty Whelan has said that his new breakfast show, starting at 7am on RTÉ 2FM on Monday morning, will focus mainly on his own personality rather than relying on gags or sketches. Speaking to tonight’s Evening Herald the popular presenter promises listeners a fun-filled show that will offer something different to humour-based shows on offer on Today FM and FM104. Marty also promises more (and a wider wariety of) music than other shows available at the same hour.
Claire Byrne is leaving TV Three to join NewsTalk FM, the Dublin news station which is about to go national. NewsTalk have been desperate to sign a big name ever since the high-profile departure of Eamon Dunphy and sources suggest that Claire will join Ger Gilroy on a double-headed breakfast show.
Tests are now starting on the new national frequencies, and the relaunch is set to happen on October 2nd with a release outlining the station’s new schedule due tomorrow.
NewsTalk 106-108 say they are ready to launch on a national basis and will do so this Friday if given a BCI nod of approval. The four year old Dublin station were awarded the national licence earlier this year and had set October 2nd as the date when the rest of the country could tune in to its unique blend of news and talk. They will also introduce music to the schedules for the first time when they go national and there will be a schedule shake-up. NewsTalk is marketing itself as a younger alternative to RTÉ Radio 1 and have employed a number of correspondents from outside Dublin.
NewsTalk 106-108 will launch their national service this Friday following a contract signing today which sees them enter an agreement with the BCI to provide a service for ten years.
Newstalk 106-108 will offer speech-driven content for over-25s, with a primary audience of 25-44 year olds and a secondary audience of 45-55 year old adults. The station will broadcast 24 hours per day with over 120 hours of live programming per week.
Speaking at the contract signing, the BCI Chairman Conor J. Maguire said: “We are delighted to sign today’s contract with Newstalk 106-108. In now broadcasting to a national audience, the service will mark a new era in Irish broadcasting. We are confident that the service will add significantly to news and speech-based radio in Ireland and will provide Irish listeners with a vibrant alternative.”
TV3 have gone to court in order to force newsreader Claire Byrne to honour her contract with the station. Claire was part of former Dublin-only radio station NewsTalk’s national launch team last Friday. She co-hosted the station’s new-look breakfast show with Ger Gilroy and continued her late-night newsreading duties with the television station. TV3 have secured an interim injunction in the High Court which temporarily prevents Byrne from broadcasting on the radio station. TV3 says that Byrne’s contract does not allow her to perform duties with any other broadcast station without their prior consent. The case continues tomorrow.
Sponsor for 2FM breakfast show wanted
To mark Monday’s closedown of RTÉ Radio 1’s Medium Wave service Brendan Balfe will present ‘Medium Wave Goodbye’ from 1.30pm. Brendan will countdown to the switch off at 3pm with a personal choice of rare, medium and well-done moments from the Irish airwaves.
RTÉ’s broadcasts began life on medium wave as 2RN, later known as Radio Athlone, Raidió Éireann and in more recent times as RTÉ Radio 1. RTÉ introduced the FM service in 1966 to counteract interference and poor reception on the MW band.
For Medium Wave Goodbye, which will be broadcast on all wavelengths, on the internet and on RTÉ’s digital radio trial service, Brendan has assembled a nostalgic programme highlighting some of his favourite moments on Irish radio. Brendan promises an entertaining and fascinating 90 minutes of memories of a service which has brought the world into homes all over the country since 1926, capturing moments of history and life through decades of news, sport, features and entertainment. The programme includes archive audio of request programmes, pop and trad music, features, documentaries and commentaries.
After March 24th listeners can only tune into conventional RTÉ Radio 1 broadcasts on FM, 252kHz LW, and also via cable television, satellite, the internet and in pilot areas on RTÉ’s DAB digital radio trial service.
Listeners who tune into MW specifically for extra RTÉ Radio 1 programmes, including weekday sports broadcasts and Sunday religious services, will find those programmes on long wave, cable television and the internet.
For an alternative to sports broadcasts on Saturdays and Sundays listeners will find a selection of RTÉ Radio 1 arts, features and drama on RTÉ’s digital radio test station, RTÉ Choice, and as downloadable podcasts from www.rte.ie/radio1.
Following an internal competition, RTÉ Radio have announced that John McMahon has been appointed as the new Head of RTÉ 2FM. The appointment follows John Clarke’s earlier decision not to renew his contract as Head of the station. The news comes on foot of the announcement that RTÉ 2FM’s core target audience would be re-positioned in 2010 from 15-34 years to 25-44 years.
Clare Duignan, RTÉ Radio MD, said: “John McMahon is a true radiohead who migrated to RTÉ Television but is now coming home to Radio. As RTÉ 2FM faces into a challenging 2010, I am confident that John has both the skills and the vision to steer Ireland’s second most-listened-to radio station in a confident new direction. I would also like to take this opportunity to, once again, acknowledge the huge contribution by the outgoing Head John Clarke over his 11 years at the helm of RTÉ 2FM.”
John McMahon said: “After years behind the producer’s desk it’s great to now be getting behind a desk of a different sort at RTÉ 2FM. I look forward to returning to my natural home in radio and tackling the challenges ahead. RTÉ 2FM is Ireland’s most-listened-to music station. I look forward to working with the hugely talented 2FM team to build on this unquestionably solid foundation to re-shape the station for a new generation.”
38 year old John has a Post-graduate in broadcast journalism. He joined RTÉ in 1994, working in RTÉ Aertel, before becoming RTÉ’s first webmaster and launching RTÉ Online in 1996. He moved to RTÉ Radio in 1998 where over the years he worked as a series producer on RTÉ Radio 1’s ‘Today with Pat Kenny’, ‘5 7 Live’, ‘The Sunday Show’ and ‘The Vinyl Curtain’. From 2002 until 2004 he was series producer of RTÉ 2FM’s ‘Full Irish with Ryan Tubridy’. In 2004 he became Editor of Current Affairs and Daily Talk Shows on RTÉ Radio 1. John moved to RTÉ Television in 2006 when he was appointed Deputy Head of Schedule Planning. John has won several awards as a programme maker, including PPI, Justice Media and Meteor Music Awards. He will take up the post later in the year.
60% of people in the RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta targeted areas in Donegal, Galway and Kerry are listening to the Irish language station. This is according to a listenership poll carried out by TNS mrbi on behalf of RnaG and is the highest reach figure for the station since surveys began. The previous highest reach figure was recorded at 41% in 2000.
The new poll offers the first new findings for RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta since the last specific research was delivered in 2006. The report also indicated a 91% total satisfaction rating for RnaG in the specific areas which indicates that the station is serving its audience well.
53% of those surveyed listen to RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta every day, as opposed to 48% in the previous survey – recorded in 2006. 75% of respondents listen at least once a week.
Responding to the results of the survey, Ceannaire of RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta, Edel Ní Chuireáin, said: “We are extremely pleased with the results of this survey. It indicates that RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta is performing exceptionally well in both reach and share despite strong competition. Current economic conditions mean these are difficult times for many, perhaps none more so than the rural communities on the western seaboard – key audiences for RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta. It is therefore particularly gratifying that this poll suggests such high levels of listener satisfaction with the service – an indication of the relevance and the importance of the service provided by RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta to those communities.”
RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta is a national radio station broadcasting from its studios in Casla, Co. Galway, in Doirí Beaga, Co. Donegal, in Baile na nGall, Co. Kerry, in Castlebar, Co. Mayo and in Donnybrook, Dublin. This survey was commissioned by RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta and was carried out by TNS mrbi between May 21st and July 9th in the Gaeltacht areas of Kerry, Galway and Donegal, based on a sample of 511 people aged 15+ years. Previous surveys were carried out in 1988, 1995, 2000/2001 and 2006. The results of this survey of Gaeltacht areas are not comparable with the national JNLR survey.
RTÉ have announced that Ana Leddy has decided to stand down as head of RTÉ Radio 1 when her contract expires next year. Commenting on her decision, Leddy said: “After five years at the helm of the station, it is time for a change.”
During Ms Leddy’s time as Station Head, RTÉ Radio 1 successfully battled a long-term share decline, consolidating its position as the most-listened to station. Ms Leddy also oversaw significant changes in weekend listening, with nine of the country’s Top 20 programmes now broadcast at weekends.
She says: “I came to RTÉ Radio 1 with a mission and it has been an incredibly satisfying five years as I have worked with colleagues to make RTÉ Radio 1 the best radio station in Ireland. It has been both challenging and exhilarating. As I prepare to hand on the role, I look at my schedule with a sense of pride, the result of some bold and indeed controversial programming decisions. It has been a privilege to be able to make these decisions and, having achieved what I want to achieve for RTÉ Radio 1, I’m now looking for a new challenge. It’s time to reconnect with my creative roots in production. I want to pay tribute to my colleagues: their work has filled our schedules with top-rating, award-winning and critically acclaimed radio, and I look forward to joining them, and making great radio.”
Speaking about Ms Leddy’s decision, RTÉ Radio MD Clare Duignan said: “Ana Leddy did that rare thing in broadcasting: she reinvigorated a station in decline. In her approach to programming and scheduling, she always put the listener first and this approach delivered results in spades. Her legacy is that she leaves Radio 1 stronger, more audience-focused and more competitive than when she arrived. I am hugely grateful to Ana for her enormous energy and commitment during her time as Head of Radio 1. As programme-makers, we all share that itch to get back to the mixing-desk. Ana is making that leap and management’s loss is programming’s gain. Listeners have a lot to look forward to once Ana Leddy returns to the talk-back.”
Ana Leddy joined RTÉ Radio 1 in 2006, having previously worked for the BBC. RTÉ will announce a competition for the position of Head of RTÉ Radio 1 in the coming weeks. Ana Leddy will continue as Head of RTÉ Radio 1 until a successor is in place, after which she will work at a senior level in programme production on Radio 1.
RTÉ Radio 1 is still Ireland’s most-listened-to radio station, with reach jumping from 24% to 25%. While competitors have seen losses to key breakfast and daytime slots, RTÉ Radio 1 has recorded strong book-on-book gains for ‘Morning Ireland’, and ‘The John Murray Show’ has made its JNLR debut with an additional 2,000 listeners. Most other RTÉ Radio 1 daytime shows recorded gains.
At weekends, gains continued for The Marian Finucane Show (Sunday), This Week, Saturday Sport, Countrywide, The Business and John Bowman.
RTÉ Radio 1 occupied every slot in the top ten most-listened-to programmes in Ireland. RTÉ Radio overall has claimed 19 of the top 20 most-listened-to programmes in the country, up from 18 this time last year.
Jim Jennings, Head of Radio 1, says: “The latest figures for RTÉ Radio 1 tell us we are the first choice for the majority of radio listeners in Ireland. Listeners choose Radio 1 time and again thanks to the high standard of award-winning, impartial and entertaining coverage that only Radio 1 can deliver. We have had much talk about the migration to and from current-affairs coverage across the stations. Our competitors have lost out in this book not because listeners are tuning out of the national discussion, but because the conversation is now firmly on RTÉ Radio 1.”
RTÉ 2FM has maintained its seven-day reach lead on its commercial competitors, while it has also remained neck-and-neck with Today FM with weekday reach at 13%. Hector Ó hEochagáin’s new breakfast show debuted with an encouraging 133,000 listeners. Ryan Tubridy’s new 2FM show, with 216,000 listeners, is almost neck and neck with Ray D’Arcy, despite being an hour shorter. 2FM has seen strong gains on Sundays.
John McMahon, Head of RTÉ 2FM, says: “The new 2FM schedule was just launched in September. The reduction in timeslots of key shows from three to two hours was always going to impact figures. Our aim was to hold stable, and this we have done. I’m delighted that ‘Breakfast with Hector’ has got off to a strong start, and it’s all to play for now with Tubridy and Colm Hayes. The figures for the afternoon shows are a real cause for optimism, as are the gains on Sundays. The new 2FM TV ad is still on air, and it has been hugely well received. The next two JNLR books will offer conclusive indications for 2FM, and we’re determined to attract more listeners to what is a brilliant new schedule.”
RTÉ Lyric FM’s Marty Whelan has made a strong debut in his new breakfast slot, with 19,000 listeners. Lyric has seen continued growth at weekends, with book-on-book growth also recorded on weekdays. Lyric’s Liz Nolan, Niall Carroll, George Hamilton, Lorcan Murray (Saturday), Gay Byrne and Rachel Blech all recorded gains book-on-book, while there was also good news for lyric year-on-year, with gains for ‘Movies and Musicals’ and ‘Niall Carroll’s Classic Drive’.
Clare Duignan, Managing Director of RTÉ Radio, commented: “There had been some slippage recently on RTÉ Radio 1 but those slippages have been dramatically reversed with these figures. We have seen a decisive move by listeners back to RTÉ Radio 1. This tells me that RTÉ Radio delivered: through the extreme weather events of late last year, and the even more extreme developments in the political and economic arena, RTÉ Radio 1 was the clear leader for up-to-the-minute news and analysis. This is a clear endorsement of RTÉ Radio’s Public Service Broadcasting and we are hugely grateful to the listeners for their loyalty. This was another good book for lyric with growth returning to week days and growth also for key programmes. Marty Whelan has made a strong debut at breakfast. As for 2FM: we made our own predictions for this book and I’m happy that we’ve landed exactly where we knew we would. The new schedule was launched last September; it informs only three months of the 12-month research period, and so we will have to wait for the next two books to get a clearer picture of where we are. We wanted breakfast to hold steady: it has. We wanted Tubridy to stay neck-and-neck with his nearest rival, who has over 10 year’s heritage in his slot. Tubridy has met that challenge. Crucially, 2FM remains the second-most-listened to radio station. It’s a good start to 2011.”
Main points for RTÉ Radio 1:
it is the only national station with a weekly reach of over 1 million listeners. Radio 1’s listenership is up 9,000 to 1.313, million
its weekday reach is up a point to 25% (+21,000 to 869,000) and weekday share up a point to 22.7%
gains at weekends with 690,000 listeners on Saturdays and 635,000 on Sundays
Morning Ireland is Ireland’s number 1 programme with Adults 15+: 449,000 listeners, up 23,000 listeners
Marian Finucane holds number 2 and number 4 position with 400,000 on Saturday and 369,000 on Sundays
Liveline is number 3 in Top 10 Adults 15+ with 392,000 listeners
The Business is number 5 in Top 10, up 4,000 listeners to 351,000
The John Murray Show debuts at No.7 in Top 10 with 332,000 listeners, up 2,000
Pat Kenny up 4,000 to 324,000
News at One up 2,000 to 335,000
Drivetime, Ireland’s most popular drivetime show, up 5,000 to 234,000
Ronan Collins, up 10,000 to 223,000
Mooney up 4,000 to 211,000
This Week up 5,000 to 201,000
Saturday Sport up 5,000 to 192,000
Miriam Meets up 36,000 year on year to 262,000
Main points for RTÉ 2FM:
it is the second most listened to station in the country with 26% (931,000 listeners) 7 day reach and 44,000 more listeners than its nearest competitor
its reach is up 11,000 to 276,000 on Sundays
The Tubridy Show debuts with 216,000 listeners – number 2 amongst 20 to 44 year olds – and in at number 15 in the Top 20 all week national radio programmes (Adults 15+)
Hector’s Breakfast Show debuts with 133,000 listeners
Ireland’s Biggest Jukebox up 9,000 to 127,000
Michael Cahill up 7,000 to 52,000
Baz and Lucy on Sundays, up 6,000 to 56,000
Main points for RTÉ Lyric FM:
it has over a quarter of a million listeners (259,000) with 7 day reach at 7%
its reach is up on weekdays (up 4,000 to 115,000) and Saturdays (up 5,000 to 99,000)
Marty in the Morning performing strongly in new breakfast slot with 19,000 listeners
Liz Nolan’s Lunchtime Classics up 2,000 to 30,000
Niall Carroll’s Classic Drive up 2,000 to 50,000
The Hamilton Scores up 2,000 to 27,000
Lorcan Murray’s Classic Drive up 2,000 to 49,000
Sunday with Gay Byrne up 2,000 to 46,000
The John Kelly Ensemble up 1,000 to 30,000