More local listeners will be able to tune into new digital radio stations, as Ofcom continues its roll-out of small-scale DAB. 

Small-scale DAB is an innovative technology which provides a low-cost way for local commercial, community and specialist music services to take to the digital airwaves.

On Tuesday, OFCOM announced:

  • announcing five further multiplex licences from the first round of awards; 
  • advertising multiplex licences for 22 areas in north west England and north east Wales in a second round of awards; and 
  •  publishing the list of locations for a third round of licence awards later in 2021. 

Round One awards: 

Following a competitive process, where each applicant was judged against specific criteria, multiplex licences have been awarded for the following areas: 

  • Basingstoke: UK DAB Networks Limited. 
  • Clevedon, Avonmouth & Filton: Severnside Digital Radio CIC. 
  • Dudley & Stourbridge: DigiMux Limited. 
  • East Bristol: Bristol Digital Radio CIC. 
  • Newcastle & Gateshead: Tyneside Community Digital CIC. 

Decisions for awards in the remaining six areas advertised in round one will be announced shortly.  

Round Two now open for applications:  

All applicants intending to apply for a multiplex licence in one of the 22 areas in north west England and north east Wales should refer to our updated application forms and guidance notes. Applications must be submitted to Ofcom by 1 September 2021. 

Round Three: pre-announcement of areas: 

Multiplex licences will be advertised in the following 25 licence areas as part of a third round of awards, likely to begin towards the end of this year: Bedford; Belfast & Lisburn; Coventry; Darlington & Bishop Auckland; Dundee; East Hull; Leicester; Lincoln; Llandudno & Betws-y-Coed; Middlesbrough & Redcar; Milton Keynes; North Aberdeen; Nottingham; Oxford; Rutland & Stamford; Shaftesbury & Blandford Forum; South Aberdeen; Swansea; Swindon; Taunton; Warminster, Devizes & Trowbridge; West Hull; Wetherby & Harrogate; York; and Yorkshire Coast. 

More information on the licensing process and roll out of small-scale DAB is available

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