This Week In Radio 17/9/2022 (I’m not your radio station, please stop texting me, I beg you!)

Lots happens in the radio industry each week so here’s a summary of the week we just enjoyed.

Here’s what happened

IMRO awards logo

The IMRO Awards hall Of Fame inductees were announced at a ceremony this week. So, who was honoured at the event?

  • Morning Ireland presenter Rachael English. Rachael spoke about how she had been fascinated by the medium since she got her first radio when she was 10. She also thanked the Morning Ireland team as well as the listeners.
  • Galway Bay FM presenter and former CEO Keith Finnegan. Keith served as the CEO of Galway Bay FM for 33 years, as well as presenting the stations current affairs show for 3 hours a day. He stepped down as CEO in summer 2022 but continues to host shows on the station.
  • The late Midlands103 boss Albert Fitzgerald. Albert had roles at many stations, starting his work at corks ERI. His main work in ireland saw him lead Midlands103 through the economic downturn by launching innovative advertiseing services, such as an online store. Something more stations have replicated since. He sadly passed away in August 2022.

Congratulations to all the new Hall of Fame members. It really is fantastic that we have such talent in the industry.

Read more details from Radio Today

The Cork’s Red FM 7:45 secret sound has been won.

The current sound had been in play for 38 weeks, before it was finally guessed by Chloe Dunne this week. It turns out the sound was of a fuel pump being placed back in its holder.

The secret sound has been running in cork for many years, starting on wireless group station 96FM. The 96FM version had a prize that increased for each day the sound stayed in play. In 2017 96FM put the competition on pause, but Red FM stole the format the following week before 96FM could restart.

Originally when Red FM took the format they ditched the increasing prize and instead guaranteed €5,000. They called it “Cork’s €5,000 secret sound”, using the guaranteed prize as a selling point.

That guaranteed prize is now no more though, and Red FM use a carbon copy of the 96FM Format. That’s why Chloe won €4,500 after 38 weeks, and why the competition is now called the “7:45 Secret Sound”, named after the time, not the money.

What’s your favourite radio competition format? Is it the secret sound/what’s that noise, that simple 60 second quiz. the fugitive/ the hunt/ secret Santa? Go vote on our insta story now.

Vote now on our Instagram

Hear the sound here

Finally this week, imagine having a phone number so close to a radio stations that you end up getting music requests multiple times a day. Well, it turns out that one poor woman has been receiving messages for FM104 for years now.

@travelwithaine on TikTok has spoken about some of the texts and voice notes she’s received over the years, including one voice note where someone was explaining why they think they should win westlife tickets.

They explained in their voice note that their dad had been murdered, and they played you raise Me Up at his funeral. They then sent on news screenshots to prove it. Once they were made aware of the fact that they had sent to the wrong number they apparently seemed embarrassed and deleted everything.

What a crazy story, it would make you wonder how many people receive texts as a result of having numbers similar to those used by stations, or even old decommissioned station numbers.

So remember folks, check the number twice before you send that talk show your deepest secrets. You do not want to mess that up.

Watch the story time video here

Quick Bits

A couple who had their first date on Today FM have got married🎉congratulations🍷

RTE broadcaster Oliver Callan has a new comedy show on BBC Sounds

A load of ad teams had some fun playing softball this week

There’s a new commercial and operations director at Wireless Group

RTE have announced their plans to cover the ploughing championships

Michael Byrne has joined the board of WLR

RTE have insisted that the new sponsor of Claire Byrne’s show will have no influence on show content

Radiocentre Ireland are launching an audio course

Jennifer Zamparelli from 2FM has opened a Hair Salon

The Great Pink Run have announced Today FM as media partners

Bonus Stuff

This week we released our first ever video content. Check out our review of the new RTÉ Radio Player below and let us know what you think.

That’s it

And that’s the summary for this week. Come back to radio land next week for more radio news📻 and be sure to follow us on Twitter and Instagram for extra stories.

This Week In Radio 27/8/2022 (still going strong)

Lots happens in the radio industry each week so here’s a summary of the week we just enjoyed.

Here’s What Happened

Dermot and Dave in the Today FM studio

Today FM presenters Dermot and Dave this week celebrated 20 years hosting together.

Dermot Whelan and Dave Moore had a special show to celebrate the occasion, with a number of celebrity guests making an appearance. Bono even sent the lads a card to say congratulations on the achievement.

“Time sure does fly when you’re having fun! We are beyond proud to be celebrating such a landmark achievement for us of 20 whole years on Irish radio. It’s hard to put into words just how much we’ve enjoyed every minute of it, but I think we can both say that it’s been a dream to work alongside a best friend for so many years!”

Dermot and Dave speaking about being on air together for 20 years

203,000 people tune into Dermot and Dave on Today FM, so it seems the lads have really continued maintaining high numbers even after 20 years.

Congratulations on the milestone from us here at Radio Land, a fantastic achievement.

Read the story here

RTE launched their new season of programming across TV and Radio this week, but they also took the opportunity to highlight funding issues at the broadcaster.

The majority of programming announcements centred around television, with new drama’s like North Sea Connection and Clean Sweep being the centre piece’s. The expensive nature of this content led into Director General Dee Forbes speaking about how essential funding stability was.

Speaking to RTÉ News, Dee said that it was a day to celebrate Irish culture and programming, but she added that stable funding for the broadcaster is needed to ensure that more days like this will be held in the future.

It will be interesting to see if RTÉ gets a boost in funding in the budget, and if this boost will meet the recommendations of The Future of Media Commission.

Read all the details about RTE’s new season launch here

Finally this week, FM104 is going through some changes, and they’ve only gone and hired Graham and Nathan from spin.

Graham and Nathan left the Fully Charged Breakfast show on Spin 1038 back in June, but are now going taking over drive time on FM104. This means the lads now work for Wireless Group instead of Bauer,

“We are unbelievably excited to be starting our new 104 DRIVE show soon on FM104. Not just because we are joining a station with such heritage, but also because breakfast radio has aged us terribly over the last 5 years – so much so our parents hardly recognise us! We will bring the same energy to this new show as we did to breakfast, and offer something a little bit different for the Dublin drivetime. As for what prizes we’ll be giving away, that’s up for debate. It could range from a car to a melted Snickers bar, the unpredictability is what makes it exciting. Chat to you again very soon.”

Graham and Nathan speaking about their new show

We recently reported on Emma, Dave and Aisling taking over the Spin 1038 breakfast slot, you can read about that here.

Between the ever popular Strawberry Alarm Clock and this all new Drive Time show, FM104 looks like they have a really strong schedule on their hands. it will be interesting to see how the station does in JNLR books over the next while.

Read the story here

Quick Bits

Dan Healy has spoke in detail about the recent changes at 2FM

Tickets went on sale this week for the Irish Podcast Awards

Red FM breakfast presenter Laura O’Mahony has spoke about body positivity and banning tiredness

An article in the Business post has called for VAT to be waved for media organisations, it has since been retweeted by the IBI

2FM presenter Carl Mullan spoke this week about how he was giving up on his radio dream before getting the 2FM Breakfast gig

The Belly of the beast, a Goloud podcast that received €20,000 in funding was published this week

And that’s the summary for this week. Come back to radio land next week for more radio news📻 and be sure to follow us on Twitter and Instagram for extra stories.

This Week In Radio 6/8/2022 (who will get the gig)

Lots happens in the radio industry each week so here’s a summary of the week we just enjoyed.


Just a quick note to say that I’m on holidays this week, so Radio Land won’t be as detailed as usual. We’ll be back to having a fully detailed post next week👍 thanks for understanding.

Here’s What Happened

The boss at RTÉ Radio 1 has said Clare Byrnes TV replacement has big shoes to fill. Speaking this week, Peter Woods said Clare would be a tough act to follow, he also went on to praise her work ethic.

RTE is expected to announce Clare’s successor at their autumn launch this month, with Sarah McInerney, Grainne Seoige and Sharon Ni Bheolain all reportedly in the running.

You can read that story here

KCLR have announced the death of former presenter Johnny Barry. Johnny presented shows on the station since 2005, and more recently had been the stations Irish language ambassador

May he rest in peace

Read the story here

In late April 2005, Cork journalist Martin Barry died by assisted suicide in Zurich. The night before he died, he asked his partner Laura McDaid to complete one task for him, to find his birth mother and give her a message

That story has been told in a BBC Radio 4 documentary series called the last Request. It aired this week and is now available on BBC sounds.

You can hear the documentary here

Quick Bits

Here are the details for the Oireachtas Media Awards

There’s a new director of external affairs at Radiocentre

Ray Darcy was live from Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann 2022 this week

Premier League Live returns today on Talksport Ireland, sponsored by Harvey Norman


If you’ve been affected by any of the topics discussed in this weeks radio land, you can visit the website linked below for information and support

Find supports for those impacted by suicide here

And that’s the summary for this week. Come back to radio land next week for more radio news📻 and be sure to follow us on Twitter and Instagram for extra stories.

This Week In Radio 30/7/2022 (It’s JNLR time Again)

Lots happens in the radio industry each week so here’s a summary of the week we just enjoyed.

Here’s What Happened

It’s that time again!!! This week we got the latest JNLR listenership numbers, so it’s time to see who’s up and who’s down.

Had enough JNLR stuff already this week? Click here to skip it👇

Radio 1 has had a mixed bag this time around. Some shows are up, and some are down, it probably all equals out really. The good news for RTÉ here is really the weekend schedual where they have seen some very healthy growth.

It seems they’re having some issues with weekday afternoons, which we’ll discuss more in a minute, but first let’s look at the numbers.

  • Morning Ireland is up 14,000 for a very healthy 473,000 listeners, compared with 4,59,000 back in February
  • Tubridy has also gained listeners even if it is a smaller jump. He’s now at 3,69,000 compared to 366,000, a jump of 3,000
  • Claire Byrne has hit 350,000 listeners which is an increase of 4,000
  • LiveLine continues its decline, and it’s going fast too. Joe now stands at 332,000, that’s down another 11,000, bringing his total losses in the last 3 books to a huge 72,000
  • Ray Darcy is really not having a good time either as he now sits at 197,000. This is the slots lowest number since Ray took the slot in 2015, so surely serious questions are going to be asked here.
  • Thankfully for radio 1 the losses are just for the middle of the day, as drive time is up 1,000 to 216,000

So all in all a mixed bag. Head of Radio 1 Peter Woods spoke to the Irish Times about the numbers, and it’s clear that he has some concerns about the afternoons.

“We are not 100 per cent sure on the afternoons, but we have seen a drift off from the end of News at One, and that peters out at the end as well, It’s hard to see what is happening and it’s hard to see where those listeners are going.”

Head of Radio 1 Peter Woods

He also hinted that they’ll be taking a closer look at the situation after the next book in the autumn.

This could bring a lot of changes, but if this continues for another book I wouldn’t be surprised to see Ray getting replaced by the likes of Kathryn Thomas or Brendan O’Connor. Interesting times ahead.

Radio 1 had a great run at the weekend, so you can check out the Irish Times link for more on that.

Read that here

Last time we spoke about 2FMs listener numbers, they’d just hired the 2 Johnnies, and a major TV campaign was on air promoting 2FM rising. It doesn’t seem like this has given 2FM any insane boost in listeners, but at the same time important shows are growing.

  • 2FM breakfast now has 123,000 which is an increase of 9,000-12,000. The only major change to the show in the last while has been Clock Blockers, so maybe a chance to win €10,000 is bringing in new listeners. (Note, there seems to be two sets of numbers available here so there was obviously an error at some point, the show definitely has 123,000 listeners which is an increase, but the extent of the gains has some small variation across reports. We will update article once we establish the correct info.
  • Jennifer Zamparelli has 138,000 listeners which is down 3,000. It’s still an okay number though, not catastrophic.
  • Tracey is down 2,000 and now has 127,000 listeners. Again, not catastrophic but certainly not ideal.
  • The 2 Johnnies have 122,000 listeners which is a good place to start, it will be more interesting to look at this in autumn when we can start looking at trends

I think 2FM will be fun to watch over the next while as they seem to be at the start of a new strategy. It will probably take time before we see anything extremely interesting but these numbers will be useful to compare in autumn.

RTE radio’s numbers can be found in detail here

Newstalk is doing very well with most shows gaining listeners. Any losses are small and it doesn’t seem the station has any major downward trends. That said, a few numbers from their press release might throw people slightly. Instead of comparing book to book, they went from year to year. They were very transparent about this in fairness, but we’ll stick to going book by book so it’s easier to compare with other stations.

  • Newstalk Breakfast has reached 146,000, that’s up 8,000 from 138,000 back in February
  • Pat hasn’t budged, he’s still got 148,000 listeners which is the same as last book
  • Lunchtime live is down 3,000 and now sits at 111,000
  • Moncrieff now has 88,000 listeners that’s up 11,000. This is a good continuation of a recovery we first saw in the last book.
  • The hard shoulder is also up. The show gained 4,000 and now sits at 155,000

Really not bad. Newstalk only really had a miner drop with Lunchtime Live, and at least for now that’s not a trend. There is the risk of news exhaustion hurting the station slightly in the future but they seem to have avoided this for the most part so far.

Check out all the details from Newstalk here

Today FM have made changes recently and all seems relatively okay. They are still well ahead of 2FM and that looks unlikely to change anytime soon.

The problem is they have changed so much that any comparisons to previous books are basically irrelevant. For now we’re just going to share numbers without comparisons, and we’ll get more accurate trends in a few months time. All in all things seem healthy though.

  • Ian Dempsey has 201,000 listeners or as Today FM put it, more than 200,000
  • Dermot & Dave bring in 203,000 listeners. It will be interesting to see if they can stay above that 200,000 line
  • 143,000 listen to Ray Foely. that’s a big jump for him after years at RedFM, so I’m sure he’s happy enough
  • Pamela Joyce is entertaining 134,000, as of now there’s 7,000 between her and Tracey over on 2FM so she’ll be trying hard to maintain that lead.
  • 174,000 tune into Matt Cooper at drive time

Generally these are very healthy numbers, we’ll need to wait and see how things go over the next while but it doesn’t look like Bauer will be crying anytime soon.

Today FMs numbers are here

Other stations

Unfortunately I’m not going to be able to cover every station as much as I’d love to. Here are links to a number of JNLR articles so you can hopefully find what your looking for.

I’d also recommend having a look at the JNLR hashtag on Twitter. some presenters share their numbers using that hashtag so it might be worth a look.



Radio Today

Business Plus

The Independant

Overall everything seems to be remaining stable. For those of you who got good results congratulations, and for those who didn’t don’t be too hard on yourself. Every book tells a different story, so everyone will have another chance to impress in 3 months. Keep doing your best and you’ll do just fine.

In other news

TalkSport have secured Irish broadcast rights for the premier League. The new 3 year deal covers the 2022/23, 2023/24 and 2024/25 seasons.

Talksport is available in the apps of all the Irish wireless group stations, and Irish coverage is usually produced from the 96FM studios in Cork. It will be interesting to see how the sports broadcast space evolves in Irish radio, as if Talksport or OTB took GAA radio rights for example things might change drastically.

For now though, Urban Media are selling sponsorship and advertising packages for the premier League coverage, trying to make some of the money back.

Read the story here

Finally this week, the BAI have announced a €2 million sound and vision round for Irish language projects.

This round is funded by the department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport, and Media, and is open to independent producers of television and radio projects.

In order to increase gender equality in the broadcast industry, this round requires that at least 50% of the actors or contributors on projects be women, and at least 50% of the creative team must be female also.

Any extra funding going into public service content production is a good thing for the industry, so hopefully we see more of this going forward.

The BAI point out that they will continue to allocate between 20% and 25% of funding towards Irish language projects in regular sound and vision rounds also, so we should certainly see and hear more Gaeilge on air over the next while.

The Irish language really gives you a great advantage in media, so I might need to re download Duolingo and get that skill back😂

You can get more info here

Quick Bits

RTE JR Radio has been nominated in a number of categories at the Irish Podcast Awards

96FMs best of Cork Awards are back, and voting is now open

Bauer is getting a new People and Culture director who will work across all European operations

A former RTE journalist for RnaG was sentenced this week for the sexual assault of a woman while she slept

RTE Radio 1 has some new shows for the summer

MEP Clare Daly says she has felt mischievously misrepresented by the establishment media


If you’ve been affected by any of the topics discussed in this weeks radio land, you can visit the HSE website linked below for information and support

HSE info on rape and sexual assault

And that’s the summary for this week. Come back to radio land next week for more radio news📻 and be sure to follow us on Twitter and Instagram for extra stories.

This Week In Radio 16/7/2022 (let’s go to the future)

Lots happens in the radio industry each week so here’s a summary of the week we just enjoyed.

Here’s What Happened

Logo of the future of media commission

It took a while, but it’s finally here.

This week the report from the Future of Media Commission was published. The report makes 50 recommendations, on everything from diversity to the funding of RTÉ.

This is no small report. It’s over 200 pages long and this obviously makes it very extensive. I haven’t been able to go through the entire thing myself yet but I can bring some of the key points that I got from what I’ve read so far.

  • Irish media should try negotiate with big tech. If this fails the government should step in using the EU’s copyright directive.
  • The licence fee should be replaced in 2024 with full Exchequer funding, and RTÉ/TG4 should receive strategic investment to help with their digital transformations.
  • RTE should continue its cost cutting measures.
  • The sound and vision fund should be expanded taking in all platforms, and should also include news.
  • The BAI or Media Commission should explore the use of the Irish language by public service broadcasters, with a specific focus on RnaG. They also recomend that RTÉ focus more on the Irish language across their channels and platforms.
  • TG4 should have independent editorial control of its news service.
  • RTE should try exploit its IP more in markets outside ireland
  • Defamation law should be reviewed as called for by press council
  • Ireland should have a counter disinformation strategy

That’s only scratching the surface. Unfortunately it seems that nobody has compiled a handy list of the 50 recommendations yet. The best I’ve seen is from The Irish Times, that’s linked below.

The response

The government have agreed in principle to 49 of the 50 recommendations, but they have not agreed to scrapping the licence fee. They have instead agreed to reform it to try and increase its effectiveness.

A number of media organisations such as RTÉ and the Irish Times welcomed the report, but not all comment was positive. Speaking in the Irish Examiner, Daniel McConnell said the report does nothing for most media, and it leaves many in the media unhappy that RTÉ’s dominance hadn’t been challenged.

It’s going to be an interesting few years in the media industry, and who knows what the future brings. We might have a slightly clearer picture now, but a lot is still unknown. All we can do is try our best to create quality content, and we’ll see where we land after that.

Read the full report here

Irish Times summary of the reports findings

RTE response to the report

The Irish Times response to the report

Daniel McConnell response in the Irish Examiner

Marty Whelan needs a sponsor for his breakfast show on Lyric FM. But the question is, how expensive is a lyric FM sponsorship? Let’s look at the numbers.

Marty is on air each weekday from 7am-10am. The show has 43,000 regular listeners, and the sponsorship includes 7 ten second stings across the day.

You also get a 10 second sting at the start of the show podcast, but it’s unclear if any Marty In the Morning chocolate bars are included.

An image of the RTÉ Marty Bar
From Marty on Twitter

So, how much does it cost?

  • 6 months will set you back €35,000
  • Or, you could go for the full year at a cost of €65,000, still no confirmation on if you get a Marty bar though

As much as we love Marty, his show isn’t the only thing up for sponsorship at the moment. Both traffic and weather are available too.

Traffic and travel updates are available in 3 month, 6 month and 12 month variations, costing €17,500, €30,000 and €50,000 respectively.

It’s the same story with the weather, with 3 months costing €22,000, 6 months available for just €39,000 and 12 months being available for the nice price of €69,000.

It’s interesting to see these costs as they are probably a fair reflection of prices on some of the bigger local stations in Dublin or Cork. But obviously, we can’t compare those costs to local stations as no local station could ever provide something as priceless as a Marty Bar!!!

Traffic and Weather sponsorship

Marty in the Morning sponsorship

Finally this week we’ve got more details on the moves being made by News Ireland, and how it impacts Wireless Group stations. In short, if you work at Wireless Group, get ready to share your office.

Staff at the Times were told this week to re-apply for their jobs, and it’s reported by the Irish Examiner that 15 journalism jobs might be lost. This is as a result of the closing of the daily Times newspaper in Ireland.

The Sunday Times and the Irish Sun will start sharing offices with Wireless group stations, and Harper Collins is moving in too. It’s hard to know what impact this will have, but it is Likely that The Sun will develop closer links to the radio stations for example.

Ultimately though, if the reports are true, 15 people are going to be out of a job. That’s tough to see, but we can only hope that everyone lands on their feet.

It’s a sour note to end on, but unfortunately that’s media. Hopefully we see less of these stories going forward now that we have the future of media report.

Read the story here

Quick Bits

Irish DJ Welshy is joining Spin for what they’re calling a Friday Night Residency

An opinion piece on how GAA on radio is helping the Irish abroad

Graham Norton has lost his top spot as the highest paid Irish presenter on BBC, that title now goes to Stephen Nolan

A new ad campaign for the Pride Vibes radio station has been launched by core

Applications have opened for Today FMs employee of the month

Derek Mooney spoke about his worry for his radio and tv career after Covid impacted his voice

And that’s the summary for this week. Come back to radio land next week for more radio news📻 and be sure to follow us on Twitter and Instagram for extra stories.