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43 areas earmarked for new Community Radio stations

Ofcom has announced 43 areas of the UK that might get a new community radio station on FM.

Ahead of the roll-out of small-scale DAB, which will provide a home for community radio stations on digital radio, it could become the last time so many analogue FM licences become available in the UK

Community radio provides organisations the option to provide a specialist service targeting an ultra-local area or specific communities of interest as an alternative to the output of mainstream BBC and commercial radio outlets.

In November 2017, Ofcom invited expressions of interest from groups interested in applying for a community radio licence. The regulator reported it had received 90 expressions of interest by the deadline. The 43 locations is drawn from the expressions of interest Ofcom received by the deadline.

In the last quarter of 2018 Ofcom says it will publish an invitation to apply for a community radio licence in the the following areas only - interested applicants are advised to keep an eye on Ofcom's broadcasting updates for more information.

Albrighton and Cosford (Shropshire)
Amersham and Chesham and the surrounding area (Buckinghamshire)
Borough of Scarborough (North Yorkshire)
Burghclere (Hampshire)
Carlisle (Cumbria)
Chesterfield (North Derbyshire)
Maryport, Workington, Whitehaven, Egremont (Cumbria)
Clowne, Bolsover and Barlborough (Derbyshire)
Dover (Kent)
Durham (County Durham)
Eastleigh, Hampshire
Faversham (Kent)
Ferndown, Wimborne Minster, Corfe Mullen and Holt (Dorset)
Hastings (East Sussex)
Grimsby, Mablethorpe, Trusthorpe, Sutton-on-Sea, Chapel St Leonards, Ingoldmells, Skegness (Lincolnshire)
Lowestoft and north east Suffolk
Lutterworth (Leicestershire)
Melksham (Wiltshire)
North Somerset
Northwich, Middlewich and Winsford (central Cheshire)
Portishead (Somerset)
Ryedale (North Yorkshire)
Shaftesbury and Gillingham (Dorset) and Semley (Wiltshire)
South Bucks District (Beaconsfield, Denham, Gerrards Cross, Iver, Stoke Poges, Chalfont St Giles and Chalfont St Peter)
South east London/Borough of Croydon
Thornbury and district (Gloucestershire)
Tonbridge and Tunbridge Wells (Kent)
Wallingford (Oxfordshire)
Wigan (Greater Manchester)

Ayr (South Ayrshire)
Dunfermline (Fife)
Hamilton, Larkhall, Stonehouse (South Lanarkshire)
Livingston, Bathgate and Linlithgow (West Lothian)
Shotts (North Lanarkshire)

Ballymena (County Antrim)
Enniskillen (County Fermanagh)
Newtownabbey (County Antrim)
Omagh (County Tyrone)

Merthyr Tydfil (Mid Glamorgan)
Locations within the Vale of Clwyd; Kinmel Bay, Abergele

Source data: Ofcom