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RAJAR Round Up: Radio listening down but still massive

By | Published on Thursday 7 February 2019


It’s RAJAR day. Raaaaaaaaay-jaaaaaaaaaar as they say. And when I say “they say”, of course, I mean no one says that. But just because no one says something doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be said. RAJARS are the radio listening figures for the UK that get pushed out every quarter. And look, here are some top level stats taken out of context!

1. Total UK radio audiences were down 0.9% year-on-year in the final quarter of 2018, with a 3.9% drop in London. I assume everyone was tuning into podcasts on Spotify instead. Though RAJAR reckons that 88% of the population still tune into the radio at some point for at least one moment each week. Maybe when they’re in an Uber.

2. Radio 2 is still the most listened to station in the UK, despite its audience being down 3.9% year-on-year. Radio 1 also saw its overall audience figures dip, though your main man Greg James added listeners to his breakfast show.

3. In commercial radio, Capital and LBC are biggest in London, while nationally it goes Heart, Capital, Smooth, Kiss, Classic and then Magic.

4. Consumption of radio via digital channels accounted for 52.6% of total consumption in the quarter, up from 49.9% in the same quarter in 2017. Although the commercial sector has launched a number of new digital-only channels in recent years – and more proactively pushed others – the BBC’s 6 Music remains the biggest digital-only station.

5. News UK’s Wireless Group says that after it announced that Chris Evans would be joining the current iteration of Virgin Radio, that station enjoyed its highest listening hours ever, even though he hadn’t actually joined at that point.

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