RAJAR Q1 2010: Classic FM is only national commercial station to hit high note

LONDON - Global Radio's Classic FM was the only national commercial station to increase its weekly reach in the first three months of this year, according to the quarterly Rajar audience figures today.

Classic FM's Simon Bates riding high
Classic FM's Simon Bates riding high

Classic FM's reach was 5.5 million listeners during the first three months of this year, up 7.4% when compared with the final quarter of 2009 and up 1.9% when compared with the first quarter of 2009.

During the first quarter of 2010 Classic FM's average number of total listening hours was 37 million a week, up 5.8% period on period but down 2.2% year on year.

Absolute Radio continued to lose audience, dropping 6.5% period on period to 1.4 million listeners a week during the quarter, and is now down 17.5% year on year.

In further bad news for Absolute, the station formerly known as Virgin Radio, its average total number of listening hours fell to 11 million, down 2% from the final three months of 2009 and down 8.2% when compared with its first quarter of 2009.

During the first three months of 2010, the weekly reach of UTV's national commercial station TalkSport also declined. TalkSport reached an average of 2.4 million listeners a week, a 5.1% drop when compared with the final quarter of 2009, to slip 2% year on year.

TalkSport also saw a significant decline in its total hours over the period it what proved to be a tough start to the new decade for two of the three national commercial radio stations.

The talk radio station recorded an average of 16.3 million hours during the first three months of 2010, down 20% period on period and 9.4% year on year.

Outside of individual stations, the big national networks had more reason for cheer, with Global's Heart and Galaxy and Bauer Media's Magic both boosting weekly reach during the period.

The 33 station Heart network reached 7.4 million people a week during the first quarter of 2010, up 1.4% from the final quarter of 2009 and a lift of 1.45% from the first three months of 2009.

Bauer Media's easy listening Magic network reached an average of 3.8 million people a week during the first three months of this year, up an impressive 12.6% period on period and 6.7% quarter on quarter.

The dance and R&B network Galaxy reached an average of four million people a week in the first quarter of 2010, up 3.7% when compared with the final quarter of 2009 and up 8.7% year on year.

 

RAJAR results 2010
Reach in thousands
Radio stationQ1 2010Q1 2009% changeQ4 2009% change
yr-on-yrprd-on-prd
Total Absolute Radio  13961693-17.541493-6.50
Classic FM  551554141.8751347.42
TalkSport  23682416-1.992496-5.13
Heart network  736572601.4572631.40
Galaxy network  397236538.7338313.68
Kiss network  339933262.1933850.41
Total Magic  378135436.72335812.60
Total Smooth radio  26392803-5.852694-2.04

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