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Kerrang! awarded new West Mids FM licence

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The Radio Authority has announced that it has awarded the third - and final - regional FM licence in the West Midlands to Kerrang! Radio.

Around 2.3m people will be able to receive the service, broadcasting on 105.2FM. The station will mainly serve Birmingham and Wolverhampton and surrounding areas, along with parts of Warwickshire and Staffordshire.

This will be the last regional licence awarded by the Radio Authority before its powers transfer to the new super-regulator, Ofcom, at the end of this year.

David Witherow, the Authority's Executive Chairman, said:

"This is the last regional licence to be awarded by the Radio Authority before its powers transfer to Ofcom at the end of the year. A variety of proposals were submitted from a wide range of applicants and they were generally of an impressively high standard, making our decision all the more difficult. At the end of a long discussion, Members decided that Kerrang! Radio best met the statutory criteria, and its programming aimed at an under-served segment of the younger population will clearly widen choice in the region."

Eleven applications were received to run the service, with all the major radio groups putting forward proposals - ranging from Capital's Capital Disney to an application from Chrysalis with plans to launch a Birmingham version of London newstalk station, LBC.

Lynne Wood, Kerrang! Radio West Midlands' managing director, said:

"The Kerrang! brand has higher appeal in the West Midlands than anywhere else in the UK. Around one million West Midlander┬╣s already consume Kerrang! via the magazine or the TV channel and we are delighted to be adding Kerrang! Radio to their choice."

The new West Midlands service will be Kerrang!'s first foray into operating a station on analogue FM. The station already has a presence on the digital platforms both in radio form and as a TV channel. Emap, which operates Kerrang!, is also new to the West Midlands radio scene; its other stations are mainly in the north of England, plus Kiss 100 in London.

Tim Schoonmaker, Emap Performance chief executive, said:

"A big thank you from Kerrang! to everyone in the West Midlands who supported this license application. We are going to give them a great radio station."

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