Local DAB stations come to Cumbria and Morecambe Bay

Listeners in Cumbria and Morecambe Bay will be able to receive more digital radio stations from today after two new multiplexes were launched.

The new multiplexes carry 28 digital radio stations in total with a mix of local and national services. A switch on event this morning with BBC Radio Cumbria’s Mike Zeller and CFM’s Robbie Dee saw a countdown to the moment of launch live on air.

The local BBC radio station for Cumbria is now available on DAB digital radio for the first time.

Mark Elliott, Executive Editor of BBC Radio Cumbria said: “It’s great that BBC Radio Cumbria is coming to DAB digital radio. We know from audience research that many people choose to tune in via DAB and now they can hear our broadcasts in digital quality. We will broadcast in DAB+ which means listeners will need to check they have a DAB+ enabled radio but this will mean in poorer reception areas our signal will be more robust.”

The North and West Cumbria multiplex covering Carlisle, Penrith, Workington, Whitehaven and Keswick has launched with twenty services, including local radio station CFM. The new multiplex also brings coverage of national stations like Absolute Radio 80s, Planet Rock, Scala Radio and Jazz FM to the area. Stations like Magic Soul, Hits Radio Pride and Absolute Radio Country are also now available.

Ben Cooper, Chief Content and Music Officer, Bauer Media Audio UK, said: “Today brings a new fantastic choice of radio stations from classical music to classic rock. You can now get better accessibility to your local station CFM, as well as now being able to hear Simon Mayo’s Drivetime show on Greatest Hits Radio or Lemar on Magic Soul.”

The new South Cumbria and Morecambe Bay multiplex covers Morecambe, Lancaster, Ulverston, Kendal and Windermere. Local radio stations BBC Radio Cumbria, Heart North Lancashire and Cumbria and Smooth Radio Lake District are now available digitally. Community radio station CandoFM, hospital radio station Bay Trust Radio and North Lancashire station Beyond Radio are also available. Listeners will also be able to tune into Fun Kids and Nation 80s.

Listeners can check for available stations and retune their digital radios to start receiving the new stations.

Many of the radio stations available on the new multiplexes use the newer DAB+ standard. Some older digital radios are not able to receive DAB+ radio stations. Radios with the digital radio tick mark will be able to receive DAB, DAB+ and FM radio stations.

Most local radio multiplexes in the UK only carry DAB stations, but the recently launched Channel Islands multiplex and two London multiplexes also carry DAB+ radio stations.

The radio stations available in North and West Cumbria are:

BBC Cumbria (DAB+); CFM; Greatest Hits Radio; Scala Radio; Absolute Radio Country (DAB+); Jazz FM (DAB+); Absolute Classic Rock; Magic Chilled (DAB+); Magic Soul (DAB+); Planet Rock; Mellow Magic; Absolute 80s; Absolute Radio 90s; Hits Radio Pride (DAB+); Magic at the Musicals (DAB+); Absolute Radio 20s (DAB+); KISS Dance (DAB+); KISS Garage (DAB+); Magic at the Movies (DAB+); KISS Bliss (DAB+).

In South Cumbria and Morecambe Bay the stations now available are:

BBC Cumbria (DAB+); Heart North Lancashire and Cumbria; Smooth Radio Lake District; Nation 80s; Fun Kids (DAB+); Beyond Radio (DAB+); CandoFM (DAB+); Bay Trust Radio (DAB+).

The new multiplexes were originally announced in January 2020 with plans to launch by the end of the year.