The Breeze (East Hampshire & South West Surrey)

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The Breeze
The Breeze logo.PNG
Broadcast area Southampton, Winchester, Portsmouth, Four Marks, Hindhead, Haslemere
Slogan Tune In Feel Good
Frequency
First air date 1999 (as individual stations)
4 July 2010 (current format)
Format Hot AC
Owner Celador
Website The Breeze

The Breeze is an independent local radio station broadcasting to the Southampton, Portsmouth, Winchester and Four Marks areas of Hampshire, England. It is owned by Celador Radio and is part of The Breeze network of stations, the station has a 'contemporary easy listening' format, playing classic and recent melodic popular music aimed principally at listeners over 40.

The station is operated by media firm Celador and operates on three FM frequencies; the three were previously separate stations centred on each of the broadcast areas, which have over time combined into a single regional service. The station is also available online.

The station launched under its current identity and format on 4 July 2010; it has operated under various owners, formats and identities previously, with the three services having launched independently of each other in 1999 as a series of local stations each focused on a specified broadcast area. All programming is now identical across the three licence areas.

The Breeze is based at Roman Landing in the Kingsway area of Southampton, sharing facilities with another Celador-owned station in the region, Sam FM.

History[edit]

107.8 FM in Southampton[edit]

The 107.8 FM service launched under the name SouthCity FM on 5 September 1999.

In 2004, the licence was acquired by Southampton Football Club, who renamed the station as The Saint, effectively making it an FM version of their existing club station of the same name (which was broadcasting on digital TV and online), the service was at this point based at studios within Southampton FC's ground, St Mary's Stadium.

On 26 July 2007, Southampton FC confirmed it had sold the station to South Wales-based radio group Town & Country Broadcasting - a firm headed by lifelong Southampton FC fan Jason Bryant (formerly of Talksport and Virgin Radio). The sale led to a rebranding of the station as 107.8 Radio Hampshire from 6 August 2007. As Radio Hampshire, the station combined adult contemporary music with information and breaking news from Southampton FC; match coverage also continued, and the station continued to be operated from the studio at St. Mary's.

Radio Hampshire joined Nation Radio, 102.1 Bay Radio, 102.5 Radio Pembrokeshire, 97.1 Radio Carmarthenshire, 97.5 Scarlet FM and 106.3 Bridge FM in the T&CB portfolio.

107.2 FM in Winchester[edit]

See also Dream 107.2

In 1999, Win 107.2 (later 107.2 Win FM) was launched as a new local station serving the Winchester and Eastleigh area. Owned by Radio Investments Ltd, the station broadcast from a studio at the Brooks Shopping Centre in Winchester town centre. RIL was later bought by The Local Radio Company.

TLRC sold Win FM to the Tindle Radio Group in September 2006, and the new owner rebranded the station as Dream 107.2 in October 2007, adopting a soft adult contemporary music policy.

With extensive competition in the South Hampshire marketplace from numerous regional rivals - including Ocean (now Heart), Wave 105 and Original 106 (now 106 Sam FM) - Dream 107.2 struggled to build an audience, and Tindle Group subsequently decided the station was not viable as a business and should be sold off.

Franchise merger[edit]

In November 2008, Tindle Radio Group sold Dream 107.2 to Town & Country Broadcasting, who sought and received permission to largely absorb the Winchester service into their existing Radio Hampshire service at Southampton. The Winchester studios were closed and the 107.2 FM Winchester frequency switched to sharing content with Southampton's service 20 hours a day. A separate local daily breakfast programme for the Winchester licence area was maintained, though this was broadcast from the Southampton base.

107.4 FM in Portsmouth[edit]

See also Radio Victory

The local FM service for Portsmouth went on air on 19 September 1999 as a revived version of Radio Victory; this was acquired soon after launch by The Local Radio Company (TLRC) and later relaunched as 107.4 The Quay (also known as Quay Radio). The Quay broadcast from studios on Twyford Avenue in Portsmouth.

Portsmouth F.C. subsequently entered into a joint-venture with TLRC to run the station (along with Spirit FM in Chichester and Isle of Wight Radio), with the club taking full control of The Quay when the partnership was dissolved in August 2009 (TLRC retained Spirit FM) and renaming the station Quay Radio.[1]

In the summer of 2010, Portsmouth F.C. went into administration; Quay Radio was shut down at noon on Friday 30 July 2010 as a result. The station was sold to Celador Radio Broadcasting, who announced that following their purchase of the frequency, 107.4 FM would broadcast as part of The Breeze 107 from the end of July 2010.

The broadcast rights to Portsmouth F.C.'s matches remained with the club, meaning that the club's matches would no longer be broadcast on 107.4 FM. It was agreed days before the start of the 2010–11 Championship season that Express FM, a community station for Portsmouth, would now broadcast the commentary for Portsmouth F.C. matches.

97.1-102 in East Hampshire, South West Surrey and North West Sussex[edit]

See also Delta FM

The original Delta Radio first broadcast in January 1990, it was the brainchild of County Sound CEO, Mike Powell who successfully lobbied the IBA for permission to put separate programming for the Haslemere district on what was originally intended to be a relay transmitter for Guildford's County Sound. The station was launched by County Sound's Terry Mann, formerly Programme Director of Radio 210, Reading, after County Sound merged with Radio Mercury to form Allied Radio, Delta Radio was closed down by its new owners in 1992 and the transmitter went back to being a relay. However, when Mike Powell's UKRD Group won the Guildford licence (after it came up for renewal), Delta Radio was relaunched in 1996. Wey Valley Radio had already been operating as a full-time service in nearby Alton and Four Marks since 1992, this station was launched as a "community" station by David Way and Paul Mann after years of campaigning for such a licence. David Way and Paul Wisdom are the new Wey Valley Radio licence holders today, it was acquired by UKRD in 1994. The decision to merge the two stations together operationally was made in 1998 and the Wey Valley service was renamed Delta, and then in 2000, the Haslemere licence (which had previously been a part of the Surrey and North East Hampshire franchise) was merged with the Alton licence to finally form a single radio station.

Play Radio[edit]

On 28 May 2009, Radio Hampshire ceased broadcasting due to Town & Country Broadcasting deciding to sell the station.[2] On 5 June 2009, the two licences for Radio Hampshire in Southampton and Winchester were acquired by internet station Play Radio UK.[3]

The new station for Southampton and Winchester, named Play Radio, launched on the 107.2 and 107.8 FM frequencies at 10am on 4 July 2009.[4] As under Radio Hampshire, the station operated a split breakfast programme (one for Southampton and one for Winchester), with all other programming shared across the two frequencies.

The Breeze[edit]

In April 2010, the licences were purchased by Celador Radio Broadcasting for an undisclosed sum.

It was announced on 21 June 2010 that the service would be relaunched as The Breeze 107,[5] the new station would be aimed at upmarket 40- to 59-year-olds and broadcast classic and contemporary easy listening music with a slight female bias. It was also announced that the station would relocate, leaving its longtime base at St. Mary's Stadium to share facilities with sister regional station Jack FM in the Kingsway area of Southampton.

Celador subsequently sought and received permission from Ofcom to end the split breakfast programme, meaning that as of the Breeze relaunch, listeners in Southampton and Winchester were receiving identical programming at all times.

The Breeze 107 launched on-air to Southampton and Winchester on 4 July 2010, exactly a year after its predecessor Play Radio had officially replaced Radio Hampshire.

In late July 2010, following Celador's purchase of the Portsmouth licence, the broadcast area of The Breeze expanded.

In February 2011, Celador relaunched their Bristol station Star 107.2 as The Breeze; following this, programmes broadcast to Bristol (outside of localised daily Breakfast and weekday Drivetime shows) are sourced from the Southampton-based station.

Transmitters[edit]

Transmitter Site Frequency Power RDS Name PI Code Area
Chilworth 107.8 MHz 900W _Breeze_ C3BA (C4BA Switched) Southampton & South West Hampshire
Fort Southwick 107.4 MHz 200W _Breeze_ C3BA (C6BA Switched) Portsmouth & South East Hampshire
Crabwood Farm 107.2 MHz 200W _Breeze_ C3BA (C5BA Switched) Winchester & Mid Hampshire
Rams Walk 101.8 MHz 100W _Breeze_ C3BA (C6BA Switched) Petersfield
Brockham Hill 102 MHz 100W _Breeze_ C3BA (C6BA Switched) Alton
Four Marks 101.6 MHz 100W _Breeze_ C3BA (C6BA Switched) Four Marks
Haslemere 97.1 MHz 275W _Breeze_ C3BA (C6BA Switched) Haslemere
Hindhead 101.6 MHz 65W _Breeze_ C3BA (C6BA Switched) Hindhead

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ RadioToday
  2. ^ "Southampton's Radio Hampshire ceases broadcasting". Archived from the original on 2009-05-30. Retrieved 2009-05-28. 
  3. ^ Park Media. "radiotoday.co.uk Radio Hampshire Saved". Archived from the original on 2009-06-10. Retrieved 2009-06-08. 
  4. ^ "Southampton comes out to play". Retrieved 2009-08-09. 
  5. ^ "Celador to Launch The Breeze 107". Radio Today. 21 June 2010. Retrieved 21 June 2010. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 50°48′19.04″N 1°4′57.62″W / 50.8052889°N 1.0826722°W / 50.8052889; -1.0826722