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August 4, 2022updated 07 Oct 2022 7:12am

TalkTV and GB News see radio audience boost in Q2 RAJAR figures

By Charlotte Tobitt

Talkradio’s audience jumped 78% year on year in the second quarter according to RAJAR as it began simulcasting programmes from new sister TV channel TalkTV.

Talkradio was also one of only two news/current affairs focused stations with quarter-on-quarter growth, up by 6%. GB News Radio was up 16%. Both have a TV and radio simulcast.

News UK said Talkradio had recorded a record weekly reach of 686,000, adding that it had five million listening hours per week on average. In early 2022 Talkradio was on 650,000.

Scott Taunton, News UK’s president of broadcasting, said: “Talkradio remains the home of breaking news and straight-talking opinion, delivering another record reach number.

“Bolstered by new primetime programming including Piers Morgan Uncensored, The News Desk with Tom Newton Dunn and The Talk featuring Sharon Osbourne, Talkradio is delivering a richer listening experience on more platforms than ever.”

TalkTV and GB News simulcasts boost viewing figures

Since TalkTV’s launch on 25 April, Talkradio’s line-up has been shown on the TV channel during the day while TalkTV’s new evening primetime programmes are simulcast on the sister radio station.

News UK also owns Times Radio, where reach dropped by 6% compared to Q1, falling to 570,000 in the period ending 26 June. (The station has moved to a half-yearly weighting rather than quarterly so the Q1 comparison figure has been altered).

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Last quarter Times Radio overtook Talkradio for the first time but has dipped back down.

GB News Radio, the DAB radio simulcast that started in January of the GB News TV channel, reached 277,000 per week in the quarter, up 16% from 239,000 at the start of the year – the biggest rise among news/current affairs stations.

The broadcaster said its total number of listening hours grew from 1.5 million in January to March to almost 1.7 million in April to June, and that its average listener now takes in six hours per week. The breakfast show with Eamonn Holmes and Isabel Webster was its most popular programme.

GB News chief executive Angelos Frangopoulos said: “The strong growth of GB News Radio shows that our compelling programming connects with the people of the United Kingdom.

“From breakfast to evenings, weekdays to weekends we are seeing more and more people across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland making the switch to GB News on DAB+.”

LBC and BBC radio see dips in listeners

Meanwhile, RAJAR figures show LBC was the biggest commercial speech radio broadcaster in the UK in the second quarter with weekly reach of 3.3 million, down 6% quarter on quarter.

BBC Radio 4 dipped slightly from 10.6 million weekly listeners at the start of 2022 to 10.3 million. The Today programme saw an average listenership Monday to Saturday of 6.59 million people – unchanged from the past two quarters.

BBC World Service, which had seen a large 22% quarter-on-quarter rise in Q1 perhaps down to the start of the conflict in Ukraine, saw weekly listenership drop by 7% to 1.41 million.

BBC local radio also dropped, by 11% to 7.67 million.

RAJAR Q2 2022 audience data full report.

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