RAJAR round-up

By | Published on Thursday 17 May 2012


So, the latest set of not especially reliable RAJAR figures are out, so everyone in the British radio community will be busy celebrating or commiserating the rise and fall in their respective listening figures, most of which can probably be explained away by statistical error. Here’s ten highlights…

1. Chris Evans saw his audience grow in the last RAJAR quarter to 9.23 million weekly listeners, and while that’s not his biggest ever audience since taking over the Radio 2 breakfast show, it does put him over two million listeners ahead of Chris Moyles over at Radio 1, which is presumably what really matters.

2. Radio 2 had a good quarter overall, getting very close to breaking its own listening record with 14.56 million wekly listeners. Ken Bruce and Jeremy Vine also helped with Radio 2’s overall performance by boosting their respective audiences.

3. Overall, Radio 1 saw its ratings slip in the last quarter in terms of listening figures and audience share (11.14 million listeners and 8.2% share compared to 11.67 million and 8.5% in the previous quarter and 11.83 million and 8.7% a year earlier).

4. It was a groovy quarter for 6music which, after its Sony Awards Best Station win earlier this week, posted record listening figures for the last RAJAR quarter, up to 1.45 million. Now they just need to find a way to shut up Huey Morgan, and all will be perfectomundo.

5. Capital FM is the biggest radio station in London with 2.26 million listeners per week – and it also now has by far the biggest breakfast show in the capital, with 1.26 million listeners versus Magic’s 793,000, Heart’s 759,000 and Kiss FM’s 750,000.

6. Elsewhere in the building at Capital owner Global Radio, Choice FM saw its audience size grow to 577,000 listeners, a 36.4% rise year on year, putting it ahead of sister station Xfm, which saw its audience drop from 604,000 a year ago to 409,000 in the first quarter of 2012.

7. Although Heart FM saw its audience slip 8% year on year in London, to 1.94 million, the Heart network (which now broadcasts in various places around the UK on FM) saw its listening figures grow year on year to 7.48 million. And while Capital’s London listening is higher than sister station Heart, UK-wide it is behind at 7.04 million (though that may be explained by reach – ie how much of the country is covered on FM).

8. Absolute Radio saw its audience slip quarter on quarter but grow year on year, to 1.6 million listeners. Though when you add in the other Absolute stations available via various digital platforms, Absolute is reaching three million listeners overall.

9. Possibly because the genre it champions is still dominating the charts, Bauer Media’s Kiss is doing rather well at the moment, with 4.4 million listeners across the UK, a 7.2% increase year on year. In London it is now ahead of Heart and not far behind Magic in terms of audience reach.

10. Back at the Beeb, Radio 3 saw the biggest fall in listening figures, down 15.8% year on year and 9.3% quarter on quarter, to just over 1.9 million listeners, ironically following a schedule revamp designed to make the station appeal to a wider audience.