Aircheck UK - Merioneth

UPDATED: 13/04/2003

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BBC Radio Wales is the English language national broadcaster for Wales.  Since it became broadcasting in 1978, when the station's output lasted for just a few hours a day, with Radio 4 in between the local programming, airtime has now expanded to over 19 hours of programming produced all over the country, specifically for the people living in the west of Offa's Dyke, however, the internet provides ex-pats and other interested parties with a service internationally.  

The station's schedule focuses on the kind of information deemed relevant to life in the country, with all the usual features plus tide times, inshore water forecasts, surf conditions and hillwalkers information aired regularly.  From 6:00am to 6:00pm, the phone lines are open (08700 100110) to provide programme content in whatever form. Monday nights include the Welsh Top 40 Chart Show.

The station broadcasts nationally on 93.9 (Swansea, Llanelli & Carmarthenshire), 94.8 (Anglesey, Bangor, Gwynedd, Carnaefonshire & Conwy), 95.4 (Wrexham), 95.9 (Newport & Monmouthshire), 95.1 (Blaenavon, Torfaen & Carmarthenshire) & 104.0 (Cardiff, Penarth & Vale Of Glamorgan) and on AM bands 882 (South Wales), 657 (North Wales) & 1125 (Mid Wales).


RADIO CEREDIGION: Awarded it's licence by the Radio Authority in February 1992, the station actually came to air 14th December of the same year.  It's launch was planned to be earlier in the year but management discovered that one of it's transmitter sites was unsuitable - as another was chosen, this has to be given clearance for use by the relevant authorities.  Co-founded by local MP Simon Thomas, the station offers a bilingual community service across the west coast of Wales on three FM frequencies: 96.6, 97.4 & 103.3FM, all spanning Cardigan Bay.  The station can be heard as far north as Caernarfon and as far south as Carmarthen - reaching over 60,000 adults aged 15+.  

In May of 1999, the Radio Authority, announced that on 6th August, they would be re-advertising the station's licence.  The RA reflected on the licencee's (Radio Ceredigion CYF) record of compliance with licence conditions - which they concluded was unsatisfactory for reasons that we don't know here at AIRCHECK -   Please e-mail us with any information to update this matter!  (  As a result, the RA concluded that the licence should be re-advertised fully, without referring to the usual 'fast-track' procedure which would normally be followed.  The successful applicant would receive a licence from 14th December 2000.  Each applicant was required to pay a non-refundable deposit of 750.00 to apply.  By the closing date of November 9th, two applications had been received.  One was from Radio Ceredigion CYF and the other was by The Marcher Radio Group Ltd, operators of Champion 103 & Marcher Radio stations in North Wales - their competitor would be called Champion Ceredigion.  However, the existing licensee was considered to have made the better application by the Radio Authority and awarded a second licence to Radio Ceredigion 2000 CYF Ltd on 10th February 2000.  

The group has a board of directors elected by local members - for it's application, it restructured as a brand new company, hence determined by the 2000 part of the applicant name.  Seventy per cent of station shares are held by North Wales Newspapers Ltd.  The RA saw this involvement as making a significant plus point to the group's application, giving buoyancy to previously seen shortfalls in funding, and ensuring adequate provision of the service in future.  They referred to the large proportion of speech on the station, in comparison to other commercial radio stations, and the fact that it uses a large number of volunteers to run the station.  Research conducted by station management revealed a strong listener base, particularly those that speak Welsh and infact, the highest percentage of audience in the area.  However, the RA felt that the station perhaps didn't serve those that didn't speak Welsh as well.  This is in stark contrast to recent concerns expressed by Ceredigion MP and station co-founder Simon Thomas - he expressed concerns in local political circles about the amount of Welsh that would be heard on the station in the future.  He referred to elements of Welsh programming that were seen as decreasing with English now the mainstay language of peak time broadcasting.  Mr Thomas accused the station of undermining the Welsh language and that the English bias was having a detrimental impact on the survival of the Welsh language.  He called on future regulator OFCOM to impose stricter controls on the station's output when they next reconsider the station's licence.  This will not be until December 2008!

Radio Ceredigion broadcasts from studios at the Old Welsh School on Alexandra Road in Aberystwyth.                                





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