Digital radio services are on the way to Cumbria next year after two new 12-year licenses were awarded by regulator Ofcom.
Bauer Digital Radio Limited, which owns CFM, and MuxCo Cumbria Limited have both been handed licences by DAB digital radio multiplexes for North and West Cumbria and South Cumbria and the Morecambe Bay area respectively.
The two intend to start broadcasting next year.
Announcing the licenses, Ofcom said: “These awards will bring local digital radio services to these areas for the first time, with 20 new digital stations launching next year.”
Bauer will cover an area that includes Carlisle, Penrith, Workington, Whitehaven and Keswick.
It will carry 13 services in total including BBC Radio Cumbria and a number of national services ranging from Greatest Hits Radio and Jazz FM to Absolute Radio 80s and 90s.
MuxCo – which has partnered with Nation Broadcasting to secure the license – will cover and area including Ulverston, Kendal, Windermere, Lancaster and Morecambe.
It will also transmit BBC Radio Cumbria along with Barrow community station, Cando FM, and Bay Trust Radio, the radio station serving hospitals in Kendal, Lancaster and Morecambe. It will also launch a new station called Bay Radio.
Jason Bryant, executive chairman of Nation Broadcasting, said: “The Morecambe Bay multiplex will build on Muxco’s existing presence in the North West, extending choice for listeners across the patch.”
A DAB digital radio multiplex for South West Scotland that had also been up for grabs has not been awarded after Ofcom received no applications.