Manchester retune expands DAB coverage

Digital radio listeners in Manchester were urged to retune their digital radios on May 25 to continue to receive their local BBC and commercial DAB stations.

Transmitter power was boosted and the frequency changed on two local transmitters. At the same time, two new masts were brought on line, bringing the area’s 11 local and commercial stations to 385,000 more listeners for the first time.

The expansion of DAB coverage means that 95 per cent of Manchester households can now receive the stations.

The two new transmitters are at Littleborough, expanding the local DAB coverage in Littleborough and Rochdale, and Saddleworth, expanding coverage in Saddleworth, Oldham and the east of Manchester.

Digital Radio UK chief executive Ford Ennals said: “Manchester has a great variety of local digital stations, so it’s great news that 385,000 more listeners will now be able to enjoy all their favourite local stations on DAB digital radio for the first time.”

Ed Vaizey, Minister for Culture and the Digital Economy, added: “The digital radio retune in Manchester is great news for both listeners and Manchester’s local radio stations. Government is committed to rolling out DAB digital radio, bringing listeners around the UK greater access, better coverage and an even wider variety of content.”

Kate Squire, managing editor of BBC Radio Manchester, said: “BBC Radio Manchester has more and more listeners on DAB to our great presenters and programmes with local news, sport and great music, so the improvement to the coverage will be brilliant. We’ll be making sure listeners retune smoothly.”