BBC Essex

BBC Essex

Infobox Radio Station
name = BBC Essex

city = Chelmsford
area = Essex
branding =
slogan =
airdate = 5 November 1986
frequency = 103.5 FM, 95.3 FM, 729 AM, 765 AM, 1530 AM
share = 12.9%
share as of = March 2008
share source = []
format = Talk / News / Music
power =
erp =
class =
callsign_meaning =
owner = BBC Local Radio,
BBC East
website = [ BBC Essex]

BBC Essex is the BBC Local Radio service for the English county of Essex. It broadcasts from its studios on New London Road in Chelmsford on 103.5 (Great Braxted) and 95.3 (South Benfleet) FM, and on 729 (Manningtree), 765 (Bakers Wood), and 1530 (Rayleigh) AM. It is also available on DAB and live streaming via the internet.


BBC Essex launched on November 5, 1986. It broke from the naming convention of "BBC "Radio" (county name)" so as to avoid confusion with Essex Radio (now Essex FM). There had also been a pirate station called Radio Essex in the 1960s.

BBC Essex set out to be different from existing BBC local stations, which were often perceived as rather "stuffy" and "worthy". It launched with a more up-beat sound, an almost "tabloid" news style and younger presenters than most stations; the BBC Essex symbol also didn't feature the traditional BBC logo. However, over the years the style has been toned down and the format is now more in line with the rest of the BBC local radio family.

The station celebrated twenty years of broadcasting in November 2006.


The strongest signal is 103.5 FM, which comes from a small transmitter between Witham and Tiptree. It reaches into Hertfordshire. The 95.3FM signal is heard in most of the southern Thames Estuary as well. The South Benfleet transmitter also provides Essex FM on 96.3FM and DAB. The 500ft Manningtree [ transmitter] , the highest of all five, also has national radio frequencies, Virgin Radio, BBC DAB National (the only one in Essex) and Digital One. It is the main FM transmitter for Radio Suffolk. The Bakers Wood transmitter also has Essex FM on 102.6FM, and is one of the DAB transmitters. DAB signals, since May 20th 2002, have come from the [ Essex 12D multiplex] , which has transmitters at Maitland House (Southend-on-Sea town centre), Colchester, Sudbury (in Suffolk), and Rye Hill (south of Harlow - on a water tower). Rye Hill also has Ten 17 on 101.7FM.


BBC Essex presenters, sorted alphabetically
*Graham Bannerman ("Summer Saturday")
*Paul Barnes (Saturday evenings)
*Colin Berry (Saturday late nights)
*Jake Bowers ("Rokker Radio")
*Mike Bromfield ("BBC Essex Introducing")
*Ray Clark ("The Ray Clark Breakfast Show")
*Steve Cherelle ("Essex Country")
*Ken Crowther ("Gardening Plus")
*Etholle George (Weekday lunchtimes)
*Eric Hall ("Monster Memories")
*John Hayes ("Drivetime")
*John Leech ("Summer Soul")
*Sue Marchant (Weekday evenings)
*Phil Meacham (Sunday afternoons)
*Dave Monk (Weekday mornings)
*Sadie Nine (Monday afternoon, Saturday lunchtime)
*Mark Punter ("The Dawn Breaker")
*Nick Risby (Monday to Thursday late nights)
*Steve Scruton (Tuesday to Friday afternoons, "The Essex Years")
*Keith Skues ("Pirate Radio Skues")
*Dr Chris Smith ("The Naked Scientists")
*Glenn Speller ("Essex Sport")
*Richard Spendlove MBE (Saturday nights)
*Wally Webb (Weekday overnights)
*Ollie Winiberg ("BBC Essex Introducing")
*Ian Wyatt (Weekend breakfast)

Previous presenters

Former presenters on BBC Essex include Alex Lester, now a presenter on BBC Radio 2; Graham Pass, now a radio and television producer, Paddy O'Connell, a television and BBC Radio 4 broadcaster; Peter Heaton-Jones, now the policy advisor to a Member of Parliament in Australia; Mark Pougatch, currently a BBC TV sports presenter; Kara Tritton, former presenter on TV shopping channel QVC and television presenter and Radio 2 host Dermot O'Leary. []


Currently, BBC Essex's programming line-up consists of:


*0400-0500 Wally Webb
*0500-0600 "The Dawn Breaker"
*0600-0900 "The Ray Clark Breakfast Show"
*0900-1200 Dave Monk
*1200-1400 Etholle George
*1400-1600 Sadie Nine (Monday) / Steve Scruton (Tuesday - Friday)
*1600-1900 "Drivetime"
*1900-2200 Sue Marchant (from 2000 on Fridays)
*1900-2000 "BBC Essex Introducing..." (Fridays)
*2200-0100 Nick Risby (Monday - Thursday) / Ern & Vern (Friday)


*0600-0900 Ian Wyatt
*0900-1200 "Gardening Plus"
*1200-1400 Sadie Nine
*1400-1800 "Essex Sport"
*1800-2100 Paul Barnes
*2100-0100 Richard Spendlove

aturday Summer programming

*1400-1700 "Summer Saturday"
*1700-1900 "Summer Soul"
*1900-2100 Paul Barnes


*0600-0900 Ian Wyatt
*0900-1200 "The Essex Years"
*1200-1400 "Essex Country"
*1400-1600 Phil Meacham
*1600-1800 "Monster Memories"
*1800-1900 "The Naked Scientists"
*1900-2100 "Rokker Radio"
*2100-0100 "Pirate Radio Skues" with Keith Skues

BBC Essex simulcasts Radio 5 Live's Up All Night each night after closedown between 0100 & 0400 on weekdays and 0100 & 0500 on weekends. Five Live's early morning news programme "Morning Reports" on Saturday and Sunday mornings between 0500 and 0600.

External links

* [ Media UK - BBC Essex]
* [ History of local radio in Essex.]
* [ Pirate BBC Essex.]
* [ BBC Essex Introducing Myspace]
* [ MDS975's Transmitter map.]
* [ Bakers Wood transmitter (also digital)]
* [ Colchester (digital)]
* [ Great Braxted transmitter.]
* [ Maitland House (digital).]
* [ Manningtree transmitter.]
* [ Rayleigh transmitter.]
* [ Rye Hill (digital)]
* [ South Benfleet transmitter (also digital).]
* [ Sudbury (digital).]

Audio clips

* [ 2001 Jingle]

Video clips

* [ Recording jingles at S2 Blue in Leek (YouTube)]
* [ BBC Essex on YouTube]
* [ BBC Essex Introducing's Youtube Channel]

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