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UK firm is to broadcast 19 digital radio stations locally

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A UK company has been given a licence to broadcast over 19 different radio stations on digital radio in the Channel Islands.

Volkswagen DAB Radio. (26233264)

The licence means that Islanders with digital radios in their homes or cars will be able to listen to more stations as of October next year.

Some of the channels which could be available in Jersey include Radio Caroline, the former pirate radio station, Gaydio, which will feature LGBTQ+ programming and Chris Country Radio – a country music channel.

There are also three slots which have been classed as ‘confidential’. However, it is understood that these will be filled by existing well-known UK radio stations.

Tony Moretta, chief executive of Digital Jersey, and the former chief executive of the UK’s Digital Radio Development Bureau, said that the move was good for Jersey radio listeners.

‘This will mean we will get a number of new stations that we do not have in the Channel Islands and it will also mean that existing stations will be available on DAB [digital audio broadcasting],’ he said.

‘If you speak to Channel 103 or BBC Jersey, they have always wanted to be on DAB and the Channel Islands are the last area of the British Isles to get it.’

Today, almost all radio stations from across the world can be streamed live on the internet.

Asked if there was a need for digital radio in the Channel Islands, Mr Moretta said: ‘The technology that we use to listen to is varied nowadays. We use smartphones, Amazon Echoes and smart speakers but there is also a lot of listening that takes place in the car.

‘DAB will make it a lot easier in terms of searching for stations [in cars] and it will add a number of new stations that will feature in station lists.’

Ed Taylor

By Ed Taylor
Journalist

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