Global Radio

Global Radio
Global Radio UK Ltd.
Type Private
Industry Media
Founded 2007
Headquarters Leicester Square, London, England, UK[1]
Key people Stephen Miron (CEO)
Charles Allen (Chairman)
Ashley Tabor (Founder/Exec. president)
Richard Park (Director of Broadcasting)
Website Official site

Global Radio UK Ltd. is a British commercial radio company, the largest in the country following acquisitions of Chrysalis Radio and GCap Media.

The company's Chief Executive Officer is Stephen Miron, while the Group Chairman is Charles Allen. Richard Park is Group Executive Director and Director of Broadcasting.



According to media reports [1] Global Radio was funded 75% by a consortium including John Magnier, JP McManus, Michael Tabor and Dermot Desmond. Debt from HBoS and Bank of Ireland comprised the remaining 25% of the 375 million pounds used to form the group.

In the 2007 purchase of Chrysalis, Global took control of Heart, Galaxy, LBC and The Arrow.

Global Radio officially took control of all GCap Media brands at 23:59 on 31 October 2008. The GCap Media name was dropped at this time. The GCap purchase gave Global the network of FM stations which GCap had operated as The One Network (many of which are now part of the Heart Network or the Capital FM Network), plus Classic FM (UK), Xfm, Choice FM, Gold and Chill.

Following the acquisition of GCap Media Global were required to sell off a number of stations in the Midlands. The stations were bought by Orion Media, headed by Phil Riley, former owner of Chrysalis.

Heritage local radio stations in areas which were not already served by Heart FM were gradually rebranded and incorporated into a larger Heart Network that covers most of southern England and parts of North Wales. The remaining stations briefly formed the Hit Music Network before being merged with Galaxy Radio and 95.8 Capital FM London into the Capital FM Network.

Criticism of Global Radio

In February 2009 Global Radio and LBC were the subject of criticism by technical and scientific bloggers following their threat of legal action against medical journalist Ben Goldacre for mounting part of an LBC 97.3 broadcast by Jeni Barnett on his website.[2] The move was interpreted as an attempt to suppress criticism and debate rather than enforcement of copyright.

The broadcast has been characterised as irresponsible by David Aaronovitch in The Times, and LBC and Barnett were specifically identified in a critical Early Day Motion by Norman Lamb MP.

Capital FM

A group of stations playing rhythmic (dance and urban) music. In 2011 the stations became part of The Capital FM Network known as “95 – 106 Capital FM, The UK’s No.1 Hit Music Station” and all stations ID locally as [freq] Capital FM. Local news hours will be extended and local advertising will remain locally sold, all programming with the exception of breakfast and drive originates from London.

Choice FM

An all-urban station based in London. Until Summer 2010 is was part of the Galaxy network for marketing purposes only, but retained its own separate branding and programming. It now sits as its own brand within Global Radio's lineup

Classic FM

Classical music station broadcast nationally on FM and DAB; also available on Freesat, Sky Digital and Virgin Media.


A network of 'golden oldies' stations, there are three different variants of the station; England & Scotland, Wales and West Midlands. Many of these were the AM sister stations to heritage CHR stations which are now Heart or Capital stations; though Gold Manchester was originally a standalone station Fortune 1458 and Lite AM before becoming part of the Big-AM and later Capital Gold networks. On DAB, Gold is available in some areas which do not have Gold on AM; in these areas Gold UK is carried, though it may carry local branding on the label.

Gold England & Scotland
Gold Wales
Gold West Midlands

These stations are owned by Orion Media and operate under a brand licence from Global, Orion uses its Gold frequencies for sports programme "The Sportsbar" on Monday evenings between 18:00 and 19:00, a Friday evening football phone-in hosted by Tom Ross and Tony Butler and for local football commentaries on Weekend afternoons and Weekday evenings.


Heart is a network of adult-contemporary pop stations across southern England and north Wales. The network began with a regional station in the West Midlands and subsequently a station in London. Heart 106 in the East Midlands was sold to Orion Media and run as a franchise retaining it's current name until the start of 2011 where it was rebranded to Gem 106. In 2009 many of the heritage CHR stations which had formed part of the One Network were renamed Heart, as were Ocean and South Hams Radio (which were not part of the One Network). Heart Hertfordshire is owned by Adventure Radio and uses the Heart name and format under licence from Global; also Heart South Devon is partly owned by UKRD Group, all other Heart stations are wholly Global-owned. Heart is also available on DAB in some areas where there is not a local Heart station receiving Heart Digital, which is a relay of Heart London. On Freeview, viewers either receive Heart West Midlands or Heart Digital (depending on transmitter).

  • Heart London - DAB in selected areas, nationally on Sky and Virgin Media; Freeview in England (not Midlands) & Wales
  • Heart West Midlands
  • Heart South Coast
  • Heart North West and Wales
  • Heart Home Counties
  • Heart Sussex and Surrey
  • Heart Thames Valley
  • Heart West Country
  • Heart Hertfordshire - Owned by Adventure Radio operating under a brand licence.
  • Heart Cambridgeshire
  • Heart Gloucestershire
  • Heart Wiltshire
  • Heart Cymru
  • Heart Essex
  • Heart Kent
  • Heart East Anglia
  • Heart Devon

LBC Radio

LBC is a London orientated speech-based station featuring news, opinion and information. Its sister station LBC News offers rolling news during daytime, but now simulcasts LBC's FM content overnight.

  • LBC 97.3 - FM/DAB in London, DAB selected other areas, nationally on Sky and Virgin Media.
  • LBC News 1152 - AM/DAB in London only.


Xfm broadcasts alternative rock and independent music. It began officially in 1997 as an independent London station, it was purchased by Capital Radio Group (now Global). The Xfm brand was extended in 2006-7 with the launch of stations in Scotland, Manchester and South Wales. The Scotland station was rebranded to Galaxy Scotland which is now Capital Scotland and The South Wales station was sold to Town & Country Broadcasting becoming Nation Radio.

  • Xfm London - London FM, various areas DAB, nationally on Freesat, Sky and Virgin Media.
  • Xfm Manchester - Manchester FM, various DAB multiplexes in north of England

Digital-only stations

Global currently operates two stations exclusively broadcast to digital listeners:

  • Chill - mellow music; DAB in London and Birmingham; nationally on Sky and Virgin Media.
  • The Arrow - classic rock music; DAB in selected areas.

Former Stations

Several DAB-only stations previously operated by Global or its predecessors have now been sold off or closed down, including Capital Life, Core, The Storm, Capital Disney, Heart Digital, theJazz. There was also a digital station called The Mix, which aired content from GWR's Mix Network to DAB and digital TV listeners, but this was withdrawn following the GWR-Capital merger.

Planet Rock was sold to Rock Show consortium led by Malcolm Bluemel.

The 106 East Midlands radio licence is owned by Orion Media and it operated under a brand licence as Heart East Midlands until January 2011 when it was renamed Gem 106.[3].


External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

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