Longwave may fade from UK soon

Oct 13, 2015 10:55 pm
Click here to play or download an audio version of this report.

James Careless in Radio World has a long story about longwave radio, and its inevitable demise in England. Longwave, as the name suggests, are large waves, near AM on the dial, and in the UK largely in the 148.5–253 kHz range. Like AM radio, transmitting requires a large antenna to create that big wave, and the sound quality means broadcasting music does not work. Recently, Irish state broadcaster Raidió Teilifís Éireann announced it would end its longwave Radio 1 service to Britain Jan. 1, but the same Radio 1 programming would still be available on the Web and via the Freesat satellite TV service. Longwave loyalists, many of them Irish who listened for Irish news from in England, though, successfully protested and petitioned and persuaded the government to postpone RTÉ’s longwave closure until Jan. 1, 2017. It was the third attempt to end longwave in England that was put off. Eventually, though, the transmissions will end. The BBC has bought up the entire world supply of specially-crafted one-meter tall glass valves, but they will run out in a few years. “We have purchased whatever parts we can find, but the truth is that when our current longwave transmission equipment becomes irreparable, our long-wave service will be off-air for good,” Denis Nowlan, network manager for BBC Radio 4, said. “The BBC has committed to continue to sustain the medium for as long as the current infrastructure is viable, but that’s it.” You can read the full story at Radio World.
Wave Farm / WGXC Acra Contact Info
Mailing: PO Box 13 Acra, NY 12405
Main Office / Acra Studio
(518) 622-2598
WGXC Office
(518) 697-7400
WGXC Hudson Studio
(518) 828-0290
WGXC Feedback
(518) 212-7509 feedback@wgxc.org
Wave Farm / WGXC Acra Studio: 5662 Route 23 Acra, NY 12405
WGXC Hudson Studio: 369 Warren St. Hudson, NY 12534