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Future Radio goes Digital!

Future Radio goes Digital!

The service will operate from Norwich and will provide high quality DAB transmissions for the city and surrounding areas.

Future Digital Norfolk Ltd (FDN) is a not-for-profit company that has been set up specifically to run DAB service from Norwich.  The new DAB service will be on the air by early Autumn 2015 and the trial is expected to last for nine months.  Ofcom will evaluate the trial and, if deemed successful, may offer a broadcasting licence for a permanent small scale DAB service based in Norwich.

FDN aims to offer a more cost-effective alternative to such broadcasters and to bring more choice for local listeners, all on the high quality DAB platform.  DAB transmissions provide space for multiple broadcast radio services.  FDN is planning to broadcast a range of services and we are very pleased to confirm that Norwich's local community radio station, Future Radio, which currently broadcasts across the City on 107.8 FM, is a key partner as part of the trial.

FDN’s Technical Director, Lawrie Hallett said: “Our DAB broadcasts will be on the air across the City within twelve weeks and the trial is expected to run for nine months.   After that, if it all works well, we hope to be able to offer these and other services to the people of Norwich on a permanent basis”.

In addition to broadcasting existing local and national services, FDN will be offering a second DAB only service from Future Radio.  Future Plus will showcase the best of Future Radio's specialist output as well as providing the opportunity for new programming for listeners in the Greater Norwich area.  We have also reserved capacity to be able to broadcast separate short-term services, a facility which may be of interest to a variety of potential users, such as the organisers of festivals or other local events and activities.

Future Radio’s Station Manager, Daniele Fisichella said: “This is great news for us and all our volunteers because it means that soon we will be able to provide more content and more opportunities in radio for more local communities. A huge thanks goes to Mike Stonard and Lawrie Hallet, FDN's directors and Future Projects trustees, who have worked closely with Ofcom since long time and submitted a successful application, which will benefit the Community Radio massively. Being able to broadcast on DAB means that Future Radio will expand its reach beyond the outskirts of Norwich and listeners across Norfolk will have the opportunity to enjoy community focused programmes and alternative music. Future Radio has always been at the forefront of the use of technology as a tool of community engagement and the opportunity to broadcast on DAB will serve this purpose very well”.

FDN's Managing Director, Mike Stonard, said: "This is a really exciting opportunity to offer more radio stations and more choice for the people of Norwich.  It will also expand the already broad range of programming offered by Future Radio.  Not only will the station's existing output be available on DAB, but, in addition, listeners will also will be able to access an eclectic mix of existing and new programming on a new DAB only channel, to be called Future Plus".

Future Digital Norfolk Limited is closely associated with Future Radio; both directors of the company are also Trustees of Future Projects, the parent body of Future Radio.  Mike Stonard is the Chair of the Board of Future Projects and Lawrie Hallett, is a Trustee with a particular focus on the activities of Future Radio.  For more information please visit: http://licensing.ofcom.org.uk/binaries/radio/digital/small-scale-trial-multiplex-licensing/trial_awards_statement.pdf

 

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