House of Commons
COMMERCIAL LOCAL RADIO AND BAUER
EDM #2650
Tabled 24 July 2019
2017-19 Session
That this House notes that the commercial local radio industry is now dominated by two media giants Global and Bauer; further notes that Bauer will own 36 per cent of commercial local radio licences in the UK if their purchase of four whole groups of radio stations namely UKRD, Wireless and Celador & Lincs comprising over 30 stations goes through; notes with concern that the regulator OFCOM has relaxed the regulations regarding local content for commercial local radio stations so they no longer have to produce a local breakfast show and are obliged only to produce three hours of local content as opposed to seven previously on weekdays and are able to do so from regional centres distant from the area covered by the local radio station; further notes with alarm that Global has already closed ten local studios and is concerned that Bauer is about to follow suit; notes with further concern that Ofcom has granted Bauer a number of format changes to allow all of its stations to network all but three hours each weekday; observes that 13 Bauer stations now share all weekend programmes, marking the end of local weekend shows on these stations; calls on Bauer to retain the localness of the commercial local radio licences of which they are custodians; and requests that the Government undertakes an urgent review on the impact of Ofcom’s regulatory changes on the industry.