You may be aware that a new fund the Audio Content Fund is being launched by AudioUK (trade body for independent producers of radio & audio content) funded by DCMS. The Fund has £3 million to spend over three years.
The ACF wants to fund new quality and innovative content for broadcasting on OFCOM licensed radio stations, so commercial and community. However they also want significant coverage so are expecting to fund programmes going out on the main national or perhaps regional commercial stations. But through some quick footwork by CMA and some people from CR stations they have accepted in principle that a number of CR stations working together to broadcast some funded content would meet their criteria. This has NOT been confirmed in their guidance yet though.
So, on the basis that proposals can involve CR stations as the broadcasters (the applications must be made by one of the independent producers) we will need to work together to get acmes to some of the funding. The CMA may be able to help but it is probably for individual CR stations to identify suitable partners to form a “group” of stations willing and able to help develop programmes and broadcast them.
My suggestion would be for regional groupings but there is probably scope for “communities of interest” groupings such as city based stations or perhaps rural ones. We do not yet know what will meet the criteria for coverage exactly but it will probably be total MCA or population numbers.
As a start I would be interested to hear from stations based in London or the East of England who may like to discuss working with Radio Verulam (St Albans CR) on this please
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