Two of the BBC’s flagship radio stations see sharp drop in listeners since start of year

Two of the BBC’s flagship radio stations see sharp drop in listeners since start of year

Two of the BBC’s flagship radio stations see sharp drop in listeners since start of year

New data has shown the listening figures for BBC radio stations, with two of its flagship outlets having experienced a sharp decline in audiences – whilst some shows have remained steady instead

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Scott Mills and Chris Stark address BBC Radio 1 exit

There’s been a sharp drop in the audiences for two of the BBC ‘s flagship radio stations since the start of the year, according to newly released figures on radio listenership.

Radio 1 and Radio 5 Live have seen their average weekly listeners drop by 8% and 13% respectively, with the latter losing more than three-quarters of a million in six months.

Other stations have held steady, according to data released by Radio Joint Audience Research ( Rajar ) – with the audience for Radio 6 Music said to have reached a record high.

The data by the research body shows that Radio 5 Live lost 436,000 listeners between the first and second quarter; which is the period between March and June 2022.

New data has shown the audiences of radio stations, including those run by the BBC

A half-year comparison of figures for the radio station – which includes shows by the likes of Nicky Campbell and Naga Munchetty – indicates a fall of 763,000 listeners.

Radio 1 – which features presenters such as Greg James – saw a quarter-on-quarter drop of 201,000, while its half year drop has been recorded as 692,000 listeners.

And the quarter-on-quarter fall for Radio 4 – excluding 4 Extra – was 308,000, whilst the new data suggests that the station experienced a half-year drop of 187,000 listeners.

Naga Munchetty is among the hosts on Radio 5 Live


( PA)

However, Radio 2 – which features shows by the likes of Zoe Ball – and Radio 3 both held steady quarter-on-quarter, according to the newly-released on radio audiences.

Both Greg James’ Radio 1 Breakfast Show and Zoe Ball’s Radio 2 Breakfast Show generally held steady across the same time period, with James’ show gaining 25,000 listeners.

Aled Haydn Jones, head of BBC Radio 1, said: “I’m so pleased to see an increase in listeners for the Breakfast Show with Greg James [and] it remaining number one for our audience.”

“It’s good to see the strategy we’ve developed at Radio 1 is working, indicating the strong connection the station has with young people across the UK on Radio, YouTube, iPlayer and socials.”

Zoe Ball hosts her own breakfast show on Radio 2


( BBC)

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The data indicates that GB News radio – which launched in July last year – saw an quarter-on-quarter increase of 38,000, from a relatively low base of 239,000 in March this year.

Research body Rajar has cautioned against making comparisons with listening figures from before the Covid pandemic – as it’s changed the way that it collects its data.

Greg James is among the presenters on Radio 1


( Daily Mirror/Phil Harris)

All figured had previously been complied using face-to-face market research, though this has now been replaced with a mixture of in-person survery and data collected via apps.

Results from the next quarter will mark one year since the change and therefore allow year-on-year analysis, which offers an insight into any long-term shifts in listen behaviour.

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