AddThis SmartLayers

Journalism roles believed safe as jobs to be axed in local radio shake-up

BauerJournalism roles are understood to be safe amid a local radio shake-up which could see up to 160 jobs lost across the country.

Bauer Media has today announced that 49 out of the 56 FM licences it acquired last year will be rebranded as Greatest Hits Radio from early September, with the company confirming some roles will be put into consultation and freelance contracts reviewed as a result.

Radio Today has estimated that the current total of approximately 200 on air presenting roles across the former stations will be cut to around 40.

But HTFP understands that journalism roles at the affected stations – including news presenter and reporter posts – will not be among those at risk.

Bauer Media declined to confirm how many roles are at risk when approached.

Bauer Radio group managing director Dee Ford said: “Audiences love and trust radio. Expanding the Hits Radio brand network will ensure listeners to these acquired stations benefit from multi-platform digital distribution meaning they can continue to broadcast in an increasingly competitive, digital and voice-activated world.

“This ensures the provision of local news and information, traffic and travel as well as access for advertisers to highly valued audiences.”

Most of the stations which joined Bauer following the acquisitions of Lincs FM, Celador Radio, UKRD and Wireless will rebrand to Greatest Hits Radio from September.

In line with Bauer’s heritage stations, a small number will retain their local branding.

Graham Bryce, group managing director for the Hits Radio network brand, said: “We are committed to ensuring the future of radio in local markets and serving the needs of our listeners and advertisers.

“However, our top priority right now will be to support those affected through this period.”

A full list of the stations affected, according to Radio Today, can be found below:

Licences rebranding as Greatest Hits Radio
The Beach (Great Yarmouth & Lowestoft)
The Breeze (Alton, Petersfield, Haslemere & Bordon)
The Breeze (Andover)
The Breeze (Basingstoke)
The Breeze (Bath)
The Breeze (Bridgwater & West Somerset)
The Breeze (Bristol)
The Breeze (Cheltenham)
The Breeze (Newbury)
The Breeze (Reading)
The Breeze (Shaftesbury)
The Breeze (Torbay)
The Breeze (Warminster)
The Breeze (Weston super Mare)
The Breeze (Yeovil)
Compass FM (Grimsby)
Dearne FM (Barnsley)
Dream 100 (Tendring)
Eagle Radio (Guildford)
KLFM (Kings Lynn)
Minster FM (Northallerton)
Minster FM (York)
Mix 96 (Aylesbury)
North Norfolk Radio (North Norfolk)
Peak FM (Chesterfield)
Pulse 2 (Bradford & Huddersfield)
Radio Norwich (Norwich)
Ridings FM (Wakefield)
Rother FM (Rotherham)
Rutland Radio (Rutland)
Sam FM (Swindon)
Signal 107 (Kidderminster)
Signal 107 (Shrewsbury & Oswestry)
Signal 107 (Telford)
Signal 107 (Wolverhampton)
Signal 2 (Stoke-on-Trent)
Spire FM (Salisbury)
Spirit FM (Chichester)
Stray FM (Harrogate)
Swansea Sound (Swansea)
Tower FM (Bolton & Bury)
Trax FM (Bassetlaw)
Trax FM (Doncaster)
Wave 96.5 (Blackpool)
Wessex FM (Weymouth)
Wire FM (Warrington)
Wish FM (Wigan)
Yorkshire Coast Radio (Bridlington)
Yorkshire Coast Radio (Scarborough)

Keeping same brand and remaining as stand-alone stations
Lincs FM (Lincolnshire)
Pirate FM (Cornwall)
Sam FM (Bristol)

Keeping same on-air brand but becoming part of Hits Radio and taking network programmes outside of 6-10am weekdays
Pulse 1 (Bradford & Huddersfield)
Signal 1 (Stoke-on-Trent)
96.4 The Wave (Swansea)
Fire Radio (Bournemouth)

Rebranding as Greatest Hits Radio under brand licence agreement
Sam FM South Coast (Solent regional) – owned by Nation Broadcasting
KCFM (Hull) – owned by Nation Broadcasting

Rebranding as Hits Radio under brand licence agreement
The Breeze (Portsmouth)
The Breeze (Southampton)
The Breeze (Winchester)
-all owned by Nation Broadcasting

Encore (DAB)
Suffolk First (DAB)
Pirate 70s (online)
Pirate 80s (DAB)
Escape to Cornwall (online)
Eagle 70s (online)
Eagle 80s (DAB)
Signal 80s (DAB)
Pulse 80s (DAB)
Wave 80s (DAB)
Total Access (DAB)