Capital Manchester

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Capital Manchester
Capital FM Manchester.png
City Manchester
Broadcast area Greater Manchester, Cheshire, Lancashire
Branding 102 Capital
Slogan Manchester's No.1 Hit Music Station
Frequency FM: 102.0 MHz
11C (Manchester)
12A (Lancashire)
RDS: Capital
First air date 16 October 1994
Format Contemporary hit radio
Owner Global
Sister stations Heart North West
Smooth North West
XFM Manchester
Website Capital Manchester

Capital Manchester is a local radio station owned and operated by the Global Radio as part of the Capital radio network. The station broadcasts from studios at Spinningfields in Manchester.


The transmitter is on top of the City Tower in Piccadilly in Manchester, the same place as XS Manchester and Radio X's transmitter and all 3 services share the same broadcast antenna system which is located on the centre tower and is illuminated with red Aircraft warning lights at night.


The 102 MHz frequency in Manchester has a chequered background, initially it was occupied by Sunset 102 which included regular shows from house music innovators 808 State and a Saturday evening rave show from Sammy B; both were cited by Dave Haslam in City Life to have been instrumental in reflecting and developing the early rave culture in the city. However, due to occasional threats of violence on air and other breaches of the licence the station was closed.

The licence was re-advertised and quickly won by Faze FM who launched Kiss 102 on 16 October 1994. The licence win was spearheaded by Eugene Perera's Level Broadcast, aided by Mike Powell's Infinity Radio consultancy, and included shareholders UKRD, Eastern Counties Newspaper Group and 3i.

The station became a victim of its own success when months after opening a second station, the Yorkshire regional Kiss 105, the station's board accepted a £17.6 million takeover bid from the Chrysalis Group for a company that had cost just £600k to set up three years earlier.

Chrysalis rebranded the station as Galaxy, 11 days after transfer of ownership, as a direct result of EMAP, the Kiss brand owners, refusal to franchise the Kiss name to Chrysalis. The music policy was toned down, integrating R'n'B into the playlist and dispensing with many of the specialist programmes and presenters. Nevertheless, their investment in advertising and change of music policy was able to grow the audience further.

The station was rebranded as Capital on 3 January 2011 as part of a merger of Global Radio's Galaxy and Hit Music networks to form the nine-station Capital network.[1]

On 1 June 2017, local programming moved from Salford to new studios at the XYZ building in the Spinningfields district of Manchester City Centre. Capital Manchester shares facilities with sister station Heart North West and two Communicorp-owned stations, Smooth North West and XS Manchester.


Local programming is produced and broadcast from Capital's Manchester studios from 6-10am and 4-7pm on weekdays and 12-4pm at weekends. All networked programming originates from Global Radio's London headquarters, including the syndicated Vodafone Big Top 40 on Sunday afternoons.[2]

The station's local presenters are Rob Ellis, Rachel Burke-Davies and James 'Wingman' Wilson (Capital Breakfast), Adam Brown (weekday drivetime) and James Hall (weekend afternoons).


Capital Manchester broadcasts hourly local news updates from 5am-7pm on weekdays and 7am-12pm at weekends with headlines on the half-hour between 5am and 9am weekdays. The Manchester newsroom also produces bulletins for Heart North West, Capital North West and Wales on the Wirral, Smooth North West and XS Manchester (owned by Communicorp).[3]

Notable former presenters[edit]


External links[edit]

Coordinates: 53°27′57″N 2°16′54″W / 53.465775°N 2.281683°W / 53.465775; -2.281683 (102 Capital FM Manchester)