BBC Radio Ulster reveals the remainder of its new schedule changes
These continue to be exciting times for radio here in Northern Ireland. Our commitment remains to broaden appeal with our listeners in mind, while we introduce and develop new and upcoming talent on the airwaves.Eddie Doyle
BBC Radio Ulster has revealed the remainder of its schedule changes due to begin later this month, with the promise of new weekday and weekend programmes.
Lynette Fay; journalist, author and broadcaster Dearbhail McDonald; Kathy Clugston; Nikki Gregg; Kerry McLean; Marie-Louise Muir; Vinny Hurrell; Shane Todd and Nicola Weir are all among the line-up of presenters set to host new shows on the station across the week, covering everything from sport to current affairs and rural matters to the arts, music, comedy and entertainment.
Joining BBC Radio Ulster on Sundays will be Newry-born Dearbhail McDonald, as she presents Sunday With Dearbhail from 11am to 1pm, bringing the best of in-depth current affairs, interviews, discussion and analysis, including an essential guide to the Sunday papers.
Lynette Fay will join the station’s daytime schedule. Running from Monday to Thursdays from 3-4pm, The Lynette Fay Show will help ease listeners through the school run, brightening up tea breaks or just whiling away the afternoon with some great music. While on Fridays it’s The Vinny Hurrell Show which will build listeners up for the weekend with music and a bit of craic from 3-4pm. Lynette will also present Folk Club on Friday nights as previously announced.
Evening Extra is in the new extended drive time slot of 4-6pm from Mondays to Fridays, and Inside Politics will now be on Fridays at the new time of 5.30pm, with a brand new range of early evening programmes on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday.
These kick off with Nikki Gregg on Mondays from 6-7pm with Sportsound Extra Time, as Nikki and the sports panel discuss the biggest stories making the back pages featuring exclusive interviews, analysis and debate.
It’s all about rural affairs on Tuesdays as Nicola Weir presents Farming Matters, also from 6-7pm, with voices, views, stories, news and chat from Northern Ireland’s rural community, as well as bringing listeners essential livestock and weather reports.
On Wednesdays from 6-7pm there’s another chance to hear some of BBC Radio Ulster’s best radio documentaries and comedies, including returning programmes Perforated Ulster and The Blame Game and the new BBC Radio Ulster sitcom, called How To Have A Northern Irish Wedding, from up-and-coming Belfast writer Ciaran Bartlett. And also on Wednesdays Wah Yan Jee Sing will now be broadcast at the slightly later time of 10.55pm.
For everything from blockbuster movies to comedy gigs on Thursdays, tune in to Kathy Clugston, as she presents The Ticket from 6-7pm. And on Fridays Shane Todd and sidekick, Dave Elliot, put the week behind them with irreverent humour and ridiculous games, laced with live music and contributions from listeners from 6-7.30pm.
Moving onto the weekends, Gerry Kelly presents his Saturday show in the new time of 12pm through to1pm. BBC Radio Ulster’s award-winning radio documentary strand moves from Sunday lunchtime to Saturday in a new time slot of 1-1.30pm, followed by Inside Business, which moves to the new time of 1.30-2pm.
Marie-Louise Muir focuses on the arts on Saturdays from 6-7pm with The Culture Café. From the page to the stage, join Marie-Louise as she hosts the essential cultural conversation, followed by Caschlár with Brian Mullen at the new time of 7-9pm.
Later in the day, Jazz World with Linley Hamilton moves from Friday to Saturday in the new time slot of 9-10pm.
On Sundays, Brian D’Arcy’s Sunday show will now broadcast from 1-2pm, followed by a new programme with Kerry McLean from 2-4pm, as she helps listeners wind down their weekend and sets the mood for the week ahead with some great tunes and conversation. The music continues as Kaz Hawkins returns for a brand new six-part series with an hour long trip down the blues highway from 4-5pm. And Classical Connections With John Toal will now broadcast at the new time of 7-9pm.
These schedule changes, together with the recently announced changes to specialist music programming on weeknights, will all begin from Monday 21 October.
Eddie Doyle, BBC Northern Ireland Senior Head of Content Production, says: “Following on from our recent announcement around specialist music on weekday evenings, and the appointment of Stephen Clements in the mid-morning weekday slot, these continue to be exciting times for radio here in Northern Ireland. Our commitment remains to broaden appeal with our listeners in mind, while we introduce and develop new and upcoming talent on the airwaves.”