Angel and Express go digital over airwaves

Tony Smith in the Havant studio of Angel Radio
Tony Smith in the Havant studio of Angel Radio
  • Portsmouth is trial city for six new digital radio stations
  • Angel FM leading the project – joined by Express FM
  • Service will run for nine months from the end of the summer
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RADIO listeners are in for a treat this summer after the go-ahead was given for six new stations.

Nostalgia station Angel Radio has won a licence to broadcast six new digital stations in a trial in Portsmouth.

Tony Smith, Angel’s founder, will lead the project which will see a spin-off of his station, Angel Xtra, plus a digital presence for Express FM, The Flash, The JAMM, Mango Vibe and Triple 100% Hits.

If the trial is successful it is hoped that Ofcom, the broadcast regulator, will form a policy to enable long-term broadcasts to be licensed.

Tony said: ‘It’s wonderful.

‘We’re going to be bringing six stations on to digital.

‘One of those is Angel Extra which will be dance band music from the 1920s to the 1950s and easy listening at night. Listeners can already hear us in Portsmouth on FM but those with digital radios will be able to pick up this extra station.

‘We’re very closely involved in the other stations and I’ll be leading on the trial.

‘Angel Radio has worked hard with its partners to provide a range of stations that complement those already available in Portsmouth.

‘We are pleased that Ofcom has acknowledged we have a sensible proposal by granting us just one of 10 available trial licences for small scale DAB digital radio services in the country.’

Martin Kirby, a stalwart of Angel, has set up his own station, Flash, which broadcasts local music from The Curlew pub, in Havant.

Nicola Phipps, the editor of creative learning programmes at Highbury College, which runs the student station JAMM, said: ‘Highbury College prides itself on being a cutting-edge educational establishment, and we are excited to showcase our student-led radio service JAMM Radio to digital radio listeners in Portsmouth.

‘We look forward to working with local broadcasters to broaden choice available to radio listeners.’

Triple 100% Hits is aimed at 20 to 44-year-olds and plays current and classic hits.

And Mango Vibe plays dance music for young people adults. The stations should be on air by the end of summer.

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