RAJAR Q1 2013: Radio 2 scales new heights as BBC digital stations show long-term growth

Radio kicks off 2013 with a robust set of figures for the industry as a whole and I’m delighted that BBC Radio still attracts more than 35 million people every week. Radio 2 goes from strength to strength, setting new records across the board."Helen Boaden, Director, BBC Radio
Date: 16.05.2013     Last updated: 18.03.2014 at 18.02
Radio 2 achieved record figures of 15.27 million listeners a week – up 4.9% from 14.56 million last year and 15.1 million in the final quarter of 2012.
  • Record audience for Radio 2
  • Chris Evans Breakfast Show hits all-time high
  • Digital stations continue to grow

Radio 2's share of listeners was 17.7%, compared to 16.8% last year and 17.6% in the previous quarter.

The Chris Evans Breakfast Show attracted an unprecedented 9.8 million listeners, up from 9.2 million on the year and 9.5 million on the quarter.

Radio 4 scored a weekly reach of 10.76 million from 10.31 million last year – an increase of 4.4% - and stable over the quarter. Share was up to a record 12.8% from 11.9% last year and 12.5% last quarter.

The Today programme had a weekly reach of 6.94 million, up from 6.66 million last year but down slightly on the quarter from 7.05 million.

Radio 1 reached 10.26 million listeners a week, down from 11.14 million this time last year and 11.09 million in the final quarter of 2012. Share was 6.7%, compared to 8.2% last year and 7.4% last quarter.

The new Radio 1 schedule, aimed at a younger audience, is still bedding in. While the audience is smaller, it is more focused on a younger demographic with the highest proportion of listeners aged 15-24 in any quarter since Q3 2010 (29.2%).

The Nick Grimshaw Breakfast Show attracted 5.78 million weekly listeners. The figure fell from 7.1 million a year ago and 6.69 million in the last quarter.

Radio 3’s reach rose by 13.7% on the year to 2.16 million from 1.9 million. It was up from 2.06 million last quarter.

Radio 3 Breakfast also showed a strong increase to 704,000 weekly listeners, from 576,000 last year and 606,000 in the last quarter.

Radio 5 live, voted UK Station of the Year at this week’s Sony Radio Academy Awards, reported 6.29 million listeners a week, down from 6.36 million last year but up on the quarter from 6.12 million. Share was down slightly to 4% from 4.4% last year and 4.3% last quarter.

5 live Breakfast was broadly stable at 2.51 million, compared to 2.56 million last year and 2.48 million in the last quarter.

Helen Boaden, Director of BBC Radio, said: “Radio kicks off 2013 with a robust set of figures for the industry as a whole and I’m delighted that BBC Radio still attracts more than 35 million people every week. Radio 2 goes from strength to strength, setting new records across the board.

“The brand new schedule continues to bed in at Radio 1 and we remain confident that it will emerge strongly from a period of transition. Radio 1 is in good health – as clearly demonstrated by five golds at this week’s Sony Radio Academy Awards.”

The Asian Network achieved its second-highest reach at 554,000 listeners a week, up from 540,000 last year and 453,000 last quarter.

All four BBC digital networks continued to show strong performances with increases on the year.

The share of audiences listening to the radio on digital platforms was also up – to 34.3% from 29.2% last year and 33% last quarter.

6 Music had a weekly reach of 1.81 million, up 24.7% on last year’s 1.45 million but down slightly on 1.89 million last quarter.

1Xtra reached 1 million listeners a week, up on last year’s 916,000 and roughly in line with last quarter’s 1.04 million.

5live Sports Extra had a weekly reach of 860,000, down from last year’s 952,000 but up on 847,000 last quarter.

4 Extra was at 1.64 million listeners, up on 1.5 million last year and down slightly on 1.69 million last quarter.

BBC Local and Nations Radio had a weekly reach of 9.53 million, down slightly on last year’s 9.9 million but up on the quarter from 9.14 million.

BBC World Service reached 1.3 million listeners in the UK, equalling last year’s figure and down on last quarter’s 1.46 million.

Note to Editors

Radio 1 & 1Xtra issue 10+ figures in addition to age 15+ figures. This is because it is a more representative metric of the audience listening to this content and helps to measure success in reaching target groups for these networks.

Weekly Reach (000s)

Mar-12

Dec-12

Mar-13

 

All BBC Radio

34,594

35,190

35,069

 

All BBC Network radio

31,196

31,994

31,865

 

BBC Radio 1

11,141

11,091

10,263

 

BBC Radio 2

14,560

15,109

15,274

 

BBC Radio 3

1,902

2,061

2,163

 

BBC Radio 4

10,307

10,754

10,756

 

BBC Radio 5 live

6,364

6,124

6,288

 

 

     

 

BBC Local/regional

9,985

9,138

9,527

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Weekly Reach (000s)

Mar-12

Dec-12

Mar-13

 

BBC Radio 5 live sports extra

952

847

860

 

BBC Radio 6 Music

1,454

1,891

1,813

 

BBC Radio 1Xtra

916

1,044

1,000

 

BBC Radio 4 Extra

1,502

1,685

1,642

 

BBC World Service

1,303

1,462

1,298

 

BBC Asian Network

540

453

554

 

Contacts

General – JH

Radio 1 and 1Xtra – PC

Radio 2, 6 Music and Asian Network – AC2

Radio 3 – MC

Radio 4 and 4 Extra – LZ

5 live and 5 live Sports Extra – LW

World Service – Sophie West