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Coordinates: 51°30′44″N 0°08′13″W / 51.512248°N 0.136937°W / 51.512248; -0.136937

Absolute Radio

Broadcast area United Kingdom: National (AM/DAB); London, West Midlands (FM)

Branding Absolute.

Slogan "Where Real Music Matters" "The home of the no-repeat guarantee"

Frequency 1215 kHz, AM Variants 105.2 MHz (W. Midlands) 105.8 MHz (G. London) DAB – (Digital One) – 11D (England, Wales & Northern Ireland) – 12A (Scotland) Sky: 0107 Virgin Media: 915 Freeview: 727 Freesat: 724

Orbit Network: 127 Usen (Japan): CG3

First air date 30 April 1993 (Virgin) 29 September 2008 (Absolute)

Format Modern adult contemporary

Owner Bauer Radio

Sister stations Absolute siblings Heat Radio The Hits Kerrang Radio Kiss Magic Planet Rock

Website Absolute Radio

Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
(originally Virgin Radio) is one of the UK's three Independent National Radio stations. The station rebranded to its current name at 7:45 am on 29 September 2008.[1][2] The station is based in London
London
and plays popular rock music. It currently broadcasts on medium wave and DAB across the UK, on 105.8 FM in London
London
and 105.2 FM in the West Midlands, Sky (channel 0107), Virgin Media
Virgin Media
(channel 915), Freeview (channel 727) and Freesat (channel 724). It is also available in other parts of the world via satellite, cable, and on the Internet. As of 31 December 2013, international streaming via the internet has been discontinued.[3] Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
is a patron of The Radio Academy.[4] Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
is owned and operated by Bauer Radio of Hamburg
Hamburg
based Bauer Media Group, it forms part of Bauer's National portfolio of radio brands.

Contents

1 History

1.1 1993–1997: Virgin Radio launch and early years 1.2 1998–2000: The Ginger Media Group 1.3 2000–2008: SMG ownership 1.4 2008–2013: Acquisition by Times of India and rebranding as Absolute Radio 1.5 2013–present: Acquisition by Bauer Media

2 Programming

2.1 Audience and playlist 2.2 Notable DJs

2.2.1 Weekdays 2.2.2 Weekends

2.3 Notable former presenters 2.4 Sport

3 Broadcast

3.1 Studios 3.2 AM transmission 3.3 FM transmission 3.4 Satellite distribution

4 Website and internet broadcasting 5 Sister stations

5.1 Absolute Classic Rock 5.2 Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
60s 5.3 Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
70s 5.4 Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
80s 5.5 Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
90s 5.6 Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
00s 5.7 Former spin-off stations

5.7.1 dabbl 5.7.2 Virgin Radio Groove 5.7.3 Liquid 5.7.4 Virgin Radio Party Classics 5.7.5 Absolute Xtreme 5.7.6 Virgin Radio Viva (cancelled)

6 References 7 Bibliography 8 External links

History[edit] 1993–1997: Virgin Radio launch and early years[edit]

No 1 Golden Square
Golden Square
with "Virgin Radio" branding, 1993 – 2008.

The 1990 Broadcasting Act allowed for the launch of independent national radio (INR) stations in the United Kingdom.[5] The Radio Authority was mandated to award three INR licences, one of which (INR1) had to be for a 'non-pop' station (which was awarded to Classic FM), and one of which had to be for a predominantly speech-based service (this would be advertised later as INR3 and would be awarded to Talk
Talk
Radio). The remaining licence was to be open to 'all-comers'. The licences were to be awarded to the highest cash bidder, providing that the applicant met criteria set down in the Broadcasting Act.[6] The second national licence, INR2, would take over the 1197 kHz and 1215 kHz frequencies, which were to be relinquished by BBC Radio 3.[7] The licence was advertised in October 1991[8] and five organisations bid: the Independent National Broadcasting Company of Sheffield, which bid £4,010,000 per year; a TV-am/Virgin consortium (£1,883,000); Chiltern Radio's 20/20 Radio (£1,311,000); Radio Clyde's Score Radio (£701,000); and a consortium of CLT, Harvey Goldsmith and RTÉ (£211,000).[7] The TV-am/Virgin consortium was awarded the licence in April 1992, after the Radio Authority said that it was not satisfied that Independent National Broadcasting would be able to sustain the service.[9] Later that year, TV-am
TV-am
lost its ITV license[10] and its stake in the radio station was sold in March 1993[11] to Apax Partners, JP Morgan Investment Corporation and Sir David Frost.[12][13] The station launched as Virgin 1215 at 12.15 pm on 30 April 1993.[14] The original line-up of DJs included Richard Skinner, Russ Williams, Jono Coleman, Mitch Johnson, Graham Dene, Nick Abbot, Wendy Lloyd, Tommy Rivers, Emperor Rosko
Emperor Rosko
and Dave Fanning. Chris Evans was also hired to present a Saturday morning show, following his success at BBC GLR in the weekend mid-morning slot. The Show, The Big Red Mug Show was sponsored by Nescafe. The first song was a cover version of the Steppenwolf song "Born to be Wild", recorded by Australian group INXS. Richard Branson
Richard Branson
was the first voice to be heard, live from the Virgin Megastore in Manchester, with Richard Skinner the first voice back in the London
London
studios.[15] Skinner was also Programme Director, a role he shared with John Revell.[16] John Pearson, formerly Sales Director of LBC
LBC
was launch Sales Director. Andy Mollett was launch Finance Director. David Campbell, previously managing director of one of Virgin's post-production television companies,[17] was the chief executive at launch.[11] From before its launch on AM, Virgin Radio was campaigning for a national FM network. Initially, it lobbied for Radio 4's FM network to be made available[18] and then, when the Radio Authority launched a consultation on the use of the 105–108 MHz band,[19] it lobbied for it to be set aside as a national network.[20] The Radio Authority decided, however, that 105–108 MHz would be licensed to new local and regional stations[21] and Virgin Radio applied for[22] and won one of the new FM licences advertised in London
London
as a result.[23] Virgin Radio launched on 105.8 MHz FM in London
London
on 10 April 1995[24] beginning with a message from broadcaster David Frost
David Frost
at 6 am followed by the Russ 'n’ Jono breakfast show. Part of the licence requirements for the London
London
service meant that a daily London opt-out was broadcast on FM, presented initially by Rowland Rivron.[25] Within a year, Virgin Group
Virgin Group
was considering the next steps for the radio station, including the option of a flotation[26] or buying back the shares of JP Morgan, Apax and Sir David Frost.[13] In May 1997, it was announced that Capital Radio had agreed to acquire Virgin Radio in an £87 million deal.[27] Capital's plans included moving Virgin Radio from 1 Golden Square
Golden Square
to Capital's Leicester Square
Leicester Square
building and splitting programming between the AM and FM services.[28] The Radio Authority approved the acquisition,[29] but Nigel Griffiths, the Consumer Affairs Minister, referred the takeover to the Monopolies and Mergers Commission (MMC).[30] The MMC report into the takeover would not be issued until January 1998, and would recommend that the deal could only go ahead if Capital Gold was sold or Virgin's London
London
FM licence was left out of the deal.[31] However, the delay in approval of the Capital acquisition would ultimately lead to the deal not going through. In January 1997, Chris Evans had left his role as presenter of the Radio 1 breakfast show as a result of a disagreement between him and the programme controller Matthew Bannister (Chris had asked for Fridays off to allow more time for him to work on his Channel 4 television show, TFI Friday).[32][33] Evans was keen to return to radio.[34] Indeed, it was reported that his agent, Michael Foster, had approached Matthew Bannister to ask if Chris would be allowed to be return to Radio 1,[35] and he had gone as far as commencing negotiations to buy Talk
Talk
Radio.[36] Richard Branson
Richard Branson
wanted Evans to work for Virgin Radio, so much so that he joined him on a Concorde
Concorde
flight to New York to try to persuade him to join as the drive time presenter.[37][38] In the end, Virgin Radio hired Evans to present the breakfast show, replacing the incumbent Russ 'n' Jono show (presented by Russ Williams and Jonathan Coleman). His show started on 13 October 1997, the same day that Zoë Ball started as Evans' replacement on Radio 1.[39] The initial contract would only be for ten weeks, until the MMC announced its decision on the Capital Radio takeover.[38] Evans approached David Campbell to discuss buying the radio station and, with Michael Foster's help, they put together a deal to buy the radio station with venture capital supplied by Apax Partners
Apax Partners
and Paribas, with Virgin Group
Virgin Group
retaining a 20% stake in the business.[40] The deal was announced on 8 December 1997, and would see the formation of the Ginger Media Group, an umbrella company overseeing Virgin Radio and producing programmes such as TFI Friday.[41][42] 1998–2000: The Ginger Media Group[edit] Evans' ownership of Virgin Radio started well, with a breakfast show audience increase of 660,000 to 2.2m in his first three months.[43] In August 1998, Chris Evans took a spur of the moment decision one weekend to launch a Saturday afternoon show called Rock 'n' Roll Football, a show that is still broadcast on Absolute Radio.[44] From 5 October 1998, Virgin Radio started simulcasts of the breakfast show on Sky One
Sky One
each morning for an hour between 7.30 and 8.30 am. When a track was played on the radio, viewers would see a video at the same time.[25][45] The start of the new football season in August 1999 saw Terry Venables join Russ Williams in a show that would precede Rock 'n' Roll Football.[25] At the end of 1999, in response to the TV programme Who Wants To Be A Millionaire not having given away its top prize, Virgin Radio set a broadcasting first when Clare Barwick won £1 million at the culmination of "Someone's Going To Be A Millionaire".[25][46] The management team at the Ginger Media Group were considering expansion opportunities, including a plan to acquire the Daily Star newspaper from United News & Media, and hire Piers Morgan
Piers Morgan
to edit it. Their plans were stalled, however, when the shareholders got cold feet. Evans wrote in his autobiography that "the management wanted to stick to our original brief of expansion, whereas our investors only cared about extracting the added value."[44] 2000–2008: SMG ownership[edit] The management team therefore set themselves on a strategy to sell the business three years ahead of schedule.[44] They hired Goldman Sachs to run the sale process, and considered a public flotation,[47] before selling to the Scottish Media Group (now STV Group plc) for £225 million in March 2000. The Scottish Media Group, which owned Scottish Television
Scottish Television
and the Herald newspaper, fought off other bidders including Clear Channel, NRJ and Guardian Media. Evans personally made £75 million out of the sale.[48] Evans was subsequently fired by his new employer in 2001 for failing to report into work for five consecutive days while reportedly partying with his then wife Billie Piper.[49] Chief Executive, John Pearson, who had been with the station since before launch, resigned in April 2005,[50] and was replaced by Fru Hazlitt, who had previously been managing director of Yahoo!
Yahoo!
UK and Ireland.[51] On 13 June 2006, SMG plc signed a deal with YooMedia to make Virgin Radio available on Freeview. It has always placed a great emphasis on other methods of transmission than medium wave, as the 1215 kHz frequency suffers from considerable interference, particularly after dark – BBC Radio
BBC Radio
1, which used 1215 kHz for its first eleven years on air, moved to higher-quality medium wave frequencies (now used by talkSport) in 1978 mainly for this reason. 2008–2013: Acquisition by Times of India and rebranding as Absolute Radio[edit]

No 1 Golden Square
Golden Square
with Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
branding

On 12 April 2007, it was announced that SMG plc were to sell Virgin Radio, to enable the company to focus on its television station, STV.[52] On 30 May 2008 SMG sold Virgin Radio to TIML Golden Square Limited, a subsidiary of The Times Group
The Times Group
for £53.2 million with £15 million set aside for rebranding. TIML were given 90 days grace in which to rebrand the station. As part of the deal, Absolute Radio International, which operates two FM licences in Oxford, would manage the station.[53][54] On 1 September 2008 it was announced that Virgin Radio would be rebranded as Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
at the end of the month (28 September).[2] At the same time some changes to the line-up were made known with JK and Joel, Robin Burke, Tony Hadley
Tony Hadley
and John Osborne leaving the station and Allan Lake, Joanna Russell (of Trent FM's Jo & Twiggy) and Tim Shaw joining,[55] though Osborne would return shortly after. However, listening figures revealed for the final quarter of 2008 have revealed that almost one fifth of former Virgin Radio listeners have been lost since the rebranding to Absolute Radio.[56] The Virgin Radio brand, however, relaunched via DAB and online at 11:00am on 30 March 2016, following a new partnership with Wireless Group and its digital terrestrial commercial radio licence was approved by Ofcom
Ofcom
in March 2015. 2013–present: Acquisition by Bauer Media[edit] On 29 July 2013, Bauer Media Group
Bauer Media Group
announced it intended to purchase Absolute from current owner, The Times Group
The Times Group
for an amount believed to be between £20m-£25m, pending regulatory approval of the sale.[57] The deal was cleared by the Office of Fair Trading
Office of Fair Trading
on 23 December.[58] Subsequently, by September 2014, all other London-based Bauer stations permanently moved from Mappin House to a refurbished One Golden Square, creating a new national radio hub. Owners Bauer Radio announced in July 2015 that Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
would be taking up the 105.2 FM frequency in the West Midlands, previously held by Planet Rock. Absolute launched on 105.2 FM on 7 September 2015.[59] Programming[edit] Audience and playlist[edit]

Original Virgin Radio logo, used prior to October 2008

Virgin Radio launched aiming at a target group of 24- to 44-year-olds[60] and with a focus on album music, arguing that "singles chart shows on Radio 1 and local commercial radio were outdated because albums outsold singles by three to one."[61] It would provide a blend of recent album tracks and chart music from the past 25 years and aim to fill the "hole in the middle" between BBC Radio
BBC Radio
1 and local commercial radio, which was specifically aimed at young audiences and "gold" stations offering classic hits.[62] A year after launch, David Campbell was quoted as saying that "the music policy was wrong, even though Virgin had lots of research to suggest it was doing what listeners said they wanted. We did something we should never do: pursue critical acclaim, playing obscure tracks, gaining the praise of the music press." The station's approach had been to mix in more familiar music.[63] Fru Hazlitt, when interviewed for The Guardian
The Guardian
in September 2006, described the type of music the station championed: "It's pretty much mainstream rock festival type music. Razorlight, Keane. These bands are becoming some of the biggest in the world."[64] When announcing the rebrand as Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
on the One Golden Square blog, Clive Dickens, chief operating officer, noted that the station would be "sticking with real music – not manufactured rubbish – and we're building on the amount of live music we do – we're just going to discover more of all of it."[65] The music policy continues to focus on guitar-based rock, mostly British. In a blog post in February 2009, Head of Music James Curran noted that the thirty-most played artists in the first four months of Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
had been: Manic Street Preachers, Coldplay, Arctic Monkeys, Snow Patrol, Kings of Leon, The Killers, Oasis, Travis, U2, Placebo, Suede, Kaiser Chiefs, Kasabian, Queen, Keane, Stereophonics, Caesars, Elbow, Bruce Springsteen, R.E.M., Nickelback, The Offspring, Aerosmith, The Rolling Stones, Biffy Clyro, The Beatles, David Bowie, Nirvana, The Police
The Police
and Blur.[66] Notable DJs[edit] Weekdays[edit]

Christian O'Connell
Christian O'Connell
– (The Christian O'Connell
Christian O'Connell
Breakfast Show) Leona Graham Andy Bush[67] Dave Berry Danielle Perry Pete Donaldson Ben Burrell Sarah Champion

Weekends[edit]

Frank Skinner Jason Manford Rob Beckett Claire Sturgess

Notable former presenters[edit] Virgin Radio's original line-up included Russ Williams, Richard Skinner, Mitch Johnson, Tommy Vance, Jonathan Coleman and Nick Abbot. Other past presenters on the network include Danny Baker, Robin Banks, Kelly-Anne Smith, Vicki Butler-Henderson, Robin Burke, Martin Collins, Gary Davies, Daryl Denham, Chris Evans (who also owned the station), Ben Jones, Neil Francis, Alan Freeman, Tony Hadley, Nicky Horne, Janey Lee Grace, Kevin Greening, Gary King, Phil Kennedy, JK and Joel, Jeremy Kyle, Allan Lake, Iain Lee, Tim Lovejoy, Pete Mitchell, Geoff Lloyd, Al Murray, John Osborne, Lynn Parsons, Steve Penk, Vic Reeves, Jo Russell, Holly Samos, Harriet Scott, Tim Shaw, Richard Skinner, Graeme Smith, Suggs, David Tennant, Clive Warren, Ray Cokes
Ray Cokes
and Dave Gorman. Sport[edit] From the 2010–11 to the 2015–16 seasons, Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
broadcast live commentary of 32 Premier League
Premier League
games on Saturday afternoons. Ian Wright joined the station to host a post-match phone-in programme, as well as a regular music show on Absolute Radio 90s
Absolute Radio 90s
and a football podcast. From 2013 to 2014, Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
held UK radio rights to American football's National Football League. Broadcast[edit] Studios[edit] Virgin Radio and Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
have broadcast from studios at 1 Golden Square
Golden Square
since Virgin Radio's launch in 1993.[25] AM transmission[edit] The 1215 kHz frequency (247 metres) was used, in selected areas only, by the BBC
BBC
Light Programme until 1967. It was then used nationally as the original home of BBC Radio
BBC Radio
1[68] until 22 November 1978 and from 23 November 1978 until 28 February 1992 by BBC
BBC
Radio 3.[69] In a number of areas, particularly in areas where the signal from the main 1215 transmitters overlap with each other, Absolute Radio operates a number of filler transmitters on different frequencies. Here is a list of the current AM transmitters in use by Absolute Radio:[70][71]

Transmitter Name Coverage Frequency
Frequency
(kHz) EMRP (kW) Grid Reference Air date

Boston[72] Lincolnshire 1242 2 TF260448 000000001994-09-02-00002 September 1994

Brighton (Southwick)[73] Sussex 1197 1.1 TQ234051 000000001993-11-09-00009 November 1993

Brookmans Park[74] London, Hertfordshire, Essex, South Bedfordshire 1215 125 TL259050 000000001993-08-03-00003 August 1993

Chesterton Fen[75] South and Central Cambridgeshire 1197 0.2 TL477608 000000001994-09-02-00002 September 1994

Dartford Tunnel Dartford Tunnel 1215 0.004 TQ571769 000000001993-03-08-00008 March 1993

Droitwich[76] West Midlands 1215 105 SO929663 000000001993-03-08-00008 March 1993

Fareham[77] South Hampshire and Isle of Wight 1215 1 SU546058 000000001993-03-09-00009 March 1993

Fern Barrow[78] Dorset 1197 0.25 SZ070926 000000001993-03-11-000011 March 1993

Gloucester[79] Gloucestershire 1197 0.3 SO841230 000000001993-03-14-000014 March 1993

Greenside Scalp[80] East Tayside 1242 0.5 NO431290 000000001993-03-09-00009 March 1993

Guildford (Pirbright)[81] West Surrey and North East Hampshire 1260 0.5 SU959541 000000001993-12-24-000024 December 1993

Hoo[82] North and West Kent, South and Central Essex 1197 2 TQ790720 000000001993-03-15-000015 March 1993

Hull[83] Humberside 1215 0.32 TA169258 000000001993-03-15-000015 March 1993

Kings Heath[84] Northamptonshire 1233 0.5 SP740633 000000001993-11-07-00007 November 1993

Lisnagarvey[85] Northern Ireland 1215 16 IJ258619 000000001993-03-08-00008 March 1993

Lydd[86] South East Kent and South East Sussex 1260 2 TR049208 000000001995-04-02-00002 April 1995

Manningtree[87] South East Suffolk and North East Essex 1233 0.5 TM123295 000000001993-11-06-00006 November 1993

Moorside Edge[88] North West and Yorkshire 1215 200 SE070154 000000001993-03-08-00008 March 1993

Oxford[89] Oxfordshire 1197 0.25 SP567105 000000001993-03-12-000012 March 1993

Plymouth[90] Devon 1215 1.1 SX490585 000000001993-03-15-000015 March 1993

Postwick[91] East Norfolk and North East Suffolk 1215 1.2 TG303086 000000001993-03-16-000016 March 1993

Redmoss[92] Aberdeen and East Grampian 1215 2.3 NJ942024 000000001993-03-25-000025 March 1993

Redruth[93] Cornwall 1215 2 SW709403 000000001997-07-28-000028 July 1997

Sheffield[94] South Yorkshire 1233 0.3 SK348849 000000001993-11-06-00006 November 1993

Sideway[95] Staffordshire 1242 0.5 SJ876434 000000001993-07-09-00009 July 1993

Stockton[96] Cleveland 1242 1 NZ420218 000000001993-03-15-000015 March 1993

Swindon[97] Wiltshire 1233 0.1 SU129859 000000001993-11-11-000011 November 1993

Torbay[98] Devon 1197 1 SX878630 000000001993-03-19-000019 March 1993

Trowell[99] Nottinghamshire 1197 0.5 SK506398 000000001993-03-27-000027 March 1993

Wallasey[100] Merseyside 1197 0.4 SJ305926 000000001993-03-27-000027 March 1993

Washford[101] South Wales, Avon, Somerset 1215 100 ST058410 000000001993-03-11-000011 March 1993

Westerglen[102] Central Scotland 1215 100 NS868773 000000001993-03-10-000010 March 1993

Wrekenton[103] Tyne and Wear 1215 2.2 NZ274598 000000001993-03-18-000018 March 1993

FM transmission[edit] The station is available on 105.8 FM from the Crystal Palace transmitting station in London
London
and on 105.2 FM in the West Midlands from the Sutton Coldfield transmitting station. The signal from the Sutton Coldfield transmitter is audible throughout a large part of the Midlands, including the counties of Staffordshire, Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Warwickshire and Worcestershire. It can be heard with fairly decent quality down to Gloucester
Gloucester
on the M5 motorway. Satellite distribution[edit] In the summer of 1993, Virgin Radio began broadcasting in stereo on the Astra 1A satellite on an audio sub-carrier of the Sky News channel.[104][105] This service ceased on 1 July 2001 in anticipation of Sky's cessation of its analogue satellite service.[106] Virgin Radio was one of the first twenty radio stations which joined the Sky Digital service on 20 November 1999.[107] Carried on Astra 2A, it launched on the channel 917 of the Sky EPG,[108][109] and can today be found as Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
on channel 0107. Website and internet broadcasting[edit] Virgin Radio launched its first website on 7 March 1996.[110][111] Designed by AKQA,[112] it hosted a live RealAudio stream, making it the first European radio station to stream 24-hours a day on the internet.[110] The station went on to redesign the website a further six times as Virgin Radio.[110] Streaming audio formats and presentation developed over time: QuickTime
QuickTime
streaming was added in July 1999, an interactive media player launched in October 1999, an Ogg- Vorbis
Vorbis
stream was launched in June 2003,[110] and HE-AAC and Ogg-FLAC streams were launched in December 2009.[113] In Autumn 2012 they launched the "Opus Streaming Trial"[114] as part of the "Listen Labs", including streams for all seven stations in 24, 64 and 96 kbit/s. This trial was cancelled without further notice in autumn 2014, along with the live webcams and the public playlist API.[115] In 2001, Virgin Radio joined the Measurecast[116] and Arbitron[117] internet broadcasting measurement services. Both measurement services have since closed. In 2009, Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
started publishing its internet listening and download statistics.[118] Virgin Radio was also among the first to explore the opportunities for delivering its services to mobile phones. It took part in a joint venture with Ericsson
Ericsson
in 1999 to investigate the use of third-generation mobile phone technologies for radio,[119] launched a WAP site in 2000[120] and took part in a trial in 2001 with Crown Castle and Manx Telecom to explore the use of 3G phones to add interactivity to digital radio broadcasts.[121] In 2009, Absolute Radio launched an application for the Apple iPhone[122] and tagging for the Apple iPod Nano.[123] In 2010 applications were released for the Amazon Kindle,[124] the Nokia Ovi Store, the BlackBerry[125] and Windows Phone 7[126] and Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
was selected as a launch partner for the Apple iAd mobile advertising network.[127] In January 2014, Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
Network has restricted the access to the internet radio on their own website to UK listeners only, and removed their apps for iPhone and Android in non-UK app stores.[128] But it is still possible to access the internet radio outside the UK via the direct link or www.radioplayer.co.uk (which links to the official stream). Sister stations[edit] Main article: Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
sister stations A number of subsidiary stations to Virgin Radio and Absolute Radio have been launched as online and digital radio services over recent years, many being established during the period when SMG plc was in charge of the station. The stations were collectively known as the Virgin Radio Network (now the Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
Network). All 'Absolute' branded channels broadcast on DAB, the Internet, and digital television platforms; they are also now available as smartphone apps. The line-up of stations within the network has changed over time, and those currently on air are: Absolute Classic Rock[edit] Main article: Absolute Classic Rock A radio station on DAB, Virgin Media, Sky and the Internet playing classic rock from the sixties to the nineties. Launched as Virgin Radio Classic Rock in 2000 as part of SMG Radio strategy to trade total network listening hours at a time when analogue listening hours had been falling. The service was rebranded as Absolute Classic Rock in 2008. Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
60s[edit] Main article: Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
60s Launched on 22 November 2011, Absolute 60s is the sixth radio station launched under the Absolute branding. The station is broadcast on DAB, some digital television networks, and online. The station has defined itself as "the home of the Beatles, Stones and Mo-Town". With The Beatles and The Rolling Stones
The Rolling Stones
as highlights of the station's broadcasts, this will focus on music originating from the 1960s. Pete Mitchell is the main daytime presenter, returning to Golden Square: he was last on Virgin Radio in 2005 hosting the Breakfast show with Geoff Lloyd. Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
70s[edit] Main article: Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
70s Launched on 29 November 2011, Absolute 70s is the seventh radio station launched under the Absolute branding. The station is broadcast on DAB and online. With Rod Stewart, David Bowie
David Bowie
and Prince as highlights of the station's broadcast, this will focus on music originating from the 1970s. Richard Skinner, another previous DJ from the Virgin Radio days, will also return to Golden Square
Golden Square
to feature on this station. Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
80s[edit] Main article: Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
80s A radio station on DAB, Freesat, Sky, Virgin Media
Virgin Media
and the Internet which plays classic hits, and is aimed at "reluctant adults" who want to reconnect with the tunes of their youth. Absolute Radio 80s
Absolute Radio 80s
was launched on 4 December 2009. Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
90s[edit] Main article: Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
90s Absolute Radio 90s
Absolute Radio 90s
launched on 21 June 2010 on DAB to a 13 million population in London, Essex, Wiltshire, Bristol, Berkshire and Bath. The station is also available on Sky 0201 and online via website and mobile smartphones. Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
00s[edit] Main article: Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
00s Absolute Radio 00s
Absolute Radio 00s
launched on 10 December 2010[129] at 10 am online and on DAB Digital Radio in London.[130] After an internet poll, the first song played was Mr. Brightside
Mr. Brightside
by The Killers. Former spin-off stations[edit] Main article: Absolute Radio sister stations § Former stations dabbl[edit] Main article: dabbl dabbl was a user-controlled music radio station broadcast on the Internet and selected local DAB multiplexes 24 hours a day, and on DAB in London
London
from 7 pm to 6 am daily. Its content was chosen by members of Absolute's VIP Service, who select songs which are then voted for. Songs with the most votes are then broadcast. dabbl has now ceased, its DAB slots outside London
London
taken by Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
90s. Virgin Radio Groove[edit] Main article: Virgin Radio Groove A radio station on DAB, Virgin Media, Sky and the Internet which played motown, soul and disco music. Originally named The Groove, it was rebranded as a Virgin Radio station in 2004 and closed at the end of 2007.[131] Liquid[edit] Liquid was a station playing indie, alternative and Britpop. It ran on DAB in London
London
between 2000 and 2004, with its slot taken by Virgin Radio Classic Rock (now Absolute Classic Rock). Virgin Radio Party Classics[edit] Launched on 15 June 2006, Virgin Radio Party Classics played party pop music. The radio station was based on Suggs' Virgin Party Classics show broadcast on Virgin Radio. The station, which broadcast on Sky Digital and online, closed down on Friday 13 October 2006. Absolute Xtreme[edit] Main article: Absolute Xtreme A radio station on DAB, Virgin Media, Sky and the Internet, playing new music. Absolute Xtreme
Absolute Xtreme
was launched (as Virgin Radio Xtreme) on 5 September 2005, by Lali Parikh (Station Manager) with Steve Harris being the main on air talent. On 4 December 2009, Absolute Xtreme
Absolute Xtreme
was replaced on DAB and digital TV by Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
80s. Virgin Radio Viva (cancelled)[edit] Virgin Radio Viva, which was due to launch on the new 4 Digital Group platform (which ultimately never launched), was due to be a popular music station aimed at 15- to 29-year-old females. It will now not go ahead.[131] References[edit]

^ Parry, Caroline (18 September 2008). " Absolute Radio
Absolute Radio
signs exclusive Sony Ericsson
Ericsson
ad deal". Marketing Week. Retrieved 18 September 2008.  ^ a b Barnett, Emma (1 September 2008). "Plans revealed to rebrand Virgin Radio as Absolute". Brand Republic. Archived from the original on 7 September 2008. Retrieved 1 September 2008.  ^ "International Streaming FAQs". Absolute Radio. Retrieved 1 January 2014.  ^ "Patrons" Archived 7 January 2010 at the Wayback Machine. The Radio Academy ^ "Broadcasting Act 1990". London: HMSO. Archived from the original on 28 June 2009. Retrieved 2 May 2011.  ^ "Fact Sheet 3: The Radio Authority: Its licences and licensing procedures". London: Radio Authority. Archived from the original on 5 June 2011. Retrieved 2 May 2011.  ^ a b Linton, Martin (5 February 1992). "Pop hopefuls go under the hammer and over the top". The Guardian. London. p. 3. Retrieved 2 May 2011.  ^ "Radio Authority consults on INR opt-outs". London: Radio Authority. Retrieved 2 May 2011.  ^ Henry, Georgina (3 April 1992). " TV-am
TV-am
and Virgin awarded pop radio franchise". The Guardian. London. p. 2. Retrieved 2 May 2011.  ^ Hosking, Patrick (2 December 1992). " TV-am
TV-am
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Bibliography[edit]

Evans, Chris (2009). It's not what you think. HarperCollins. ISBN 978-0-00-732723-2.  Evans, Chris (2010). Memoirs of a Fruitcake. HarperCollins. ISBN 978-0-00-734568-7. 

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