Aircheck UK - Argyllshire

UPDATED: 17/05/2003

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BBC LOCAL RADIOBBC Radio Scotland provides a national service on FM frequencies 92-95FM & 810 MW.  The Gaelic service BBC Radio nan Gaidheal broadcasts on 103.5 - 105FM.  


ARGYLL FM (Kintyre Community Radio) hit the airwaves of the West Scotland region on 10th July 2000 to serve Kintyre, Islay & Jura, islands of the Scottish mainland.  It provides mainstream chart music, news, features and community information from studios at 27-29 Longrow, Campbelltown Argyll, using three frequencies - 106.5 (Campbelltown), 107.1 (Islay & Jura) & 107.7 (South Knapdale)  - from transmitters that are probably some of the most remote installations in the British Isles.  It is independently owned, and very much in tune with it's community.  Records show handwritten sign boards on the studio wall, in a tiny little base in the Campbelltown High Street.  It was formerly known under it's bracketed title above - but abbreviated to KCRArgyll FM started as a voluntary run radio station serving the Argyll area, broadcasting on 105.4 fm using Restricted Service Licences for a period of three years.  There was a six week run from 22nd May 1998, broadcasting at weekends up until Midnight.  Fund raising work and an application to the Radio Authority resulted in the award of the licence.    


OBAN FM: (Oban Community Radio Ltd). Broadcasting to North Argyllshire and into the Scottish Highlands, this community radio station offering 'news, views, a variety of music and entertainment for everyone living in, working in, or visiting Oban', was founded by two locals, Tom Laurenson and Andy Campbell.  The station operated two trial licences, RSLs, before being awarded a full time licence, firstly in 1992, and again in 1995.  Despite recent re-advertisement of their licence, there were no opposing groups expressing an interest, and so the licence was re-awarded by the Radio Authority under Fast-track license procedures.  This is where a licence is re-awarded to the existing licence holder, providing they do not make amendments to the existing licence content which relates to the on-air sound.  This re-award is all the more interesting when you consider that Oban FM won it's licence in 1996 despite competition.  It launched on July 15th 1996 using 103.3FM from a transmitter at Pulpit Hill.  

Three years into the licence, the station had outgrown it's first base at the McLeod Units on the Lochavullin Estate, and so it moved to it's current, much larger facilities at 123 George Street in Oban.  The station boasts adequately comfortable facilities in a building which used to be a local church hall.  The internal space has been partitioned off accordingly to create studio, office, reception and staff facilities.  As with a lot of the Scottish Highland stations, it is run by a team of unpaid volunteers - for an audience of over 15,000 people - although when you consider the summer tourist trade, this increases to over half a million.  




THE FUTURE:  The Radio Authority has advertised a new ILR licence for a service for Helensburgh, in Argyll & Bute, and the surrounding area.  This eight year licence was offered for the provision of a service on the FM (VHF) waveband.  By the closing date for receipt of applications, Tuesday, 15 April 2003, two applications, along with a non-refundable application fee of 1,500 landed on the RA desks. 

Castle Rock FM Dumbarton Ltd propose a vibrant radio service focusing on Helensburgh, the communities around the Gare Loch and Rosneath Peninsula, Dumbarton,
Vale of Leven and neighbouring places of natural association in Dunbartonshire, featuring music favourites of the last 40 years to the present day, with essential news, community information and involvement primarily for an audience aged 25 and over.  The station already has a history, having been established in 1994 as Dumbarton Festival Radio and the first team to campaign for a local radio station for Dunbartonshire, which included Helensburgh.  They were successfully awarded the licence by the RA in September 2000 and launched as Castle Rock FM 103 at 1:03pm on May 30th 2001 to serve Dumbarton, the Vale Of Leven, Alexandria and some areas of West Dunbartonshire as well as the north side of the River Clyde, Port Glasgow and some parts of Greenock.  However, licence restrictions prevented them from serving Helensburgh or the Upper Clyde Firth.  Get more information on the Helensburgh bid and the station in general at

Peninsula FM Ltd are offering  to inform and entertain, focusing on 'connecting the community'; broadcasting from the heart of Helensburgh with maximum
use of live interviews, with a mix of music and chat relevant to Helensburgh, Rhu, Garelochhead and the Rosneath Peninsula villages of Kilcreggan, Cove and Clynder.  Bid information can be studied at their website:

A decision from the powers that be is expected in the Summer of 2003.  

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