Lewis quits Decca for Classic FM

Classic FM has appointed Roger Lewis, the worldwide president of the Decca Record Company, as its new managing director and programme controller.

Classic FM has appointed Roger Lewis, the worldwide president of

the Decca Record Company, as its new managing director and programme

controller.



Lewis replaces Murray Dudgeon, who left in July to return to his old

employer, McCann-Erickson, as the executive vice-president and worldwide

media operations director based in New York. Dudgeon leaves the station

this week.



Lewis’s role is a beefed-up version of Dudgeon’s position and will

include a seat on the board of the group which owns Classic, plus 31

local licences and a series of stations abroad. He will report to Ralph

Bernard, the chief executive of the GWR Group.



Before moving to Decca, Lewis held positions at EMI Records, Capital

Radio and became the head of music at BBC Radio 1 in 1987.



’This is a great honour,’ Lewis said. ’Classic FM has become the world’s

largest commercial radio station and a much-loved friend of the British

public in a short time.’



Bernard added: ’Roger combines broadcast management skills with a unique

insight into the classical music industry.’



The announcement of Lewis’s appointment has sparked off a public dispute

between the BBC and Classic, as Lewis was last week tipped to take on

the position of controller of Radio 3 following a lengthy search for a

new chief.



In a public press wrangle this week, the BBC claimed that Roger Wright -

the BBC’s former head of classical music who took on the Radio 3 job

earlier this week - was the only candidate in the frame, while Classic

claims that Lewis was offered the job and turned it down in favour of

the Classic post.



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