November 29, 2021

First with the Alderney News

Changes on the way at QUAY-FM!

2 min read

There are exciting changes on the way for QUAY-FM!

Meeting at the Braye Beach Cinema last night, the QUAY-FM community got together to talk about major new improvements being planned for the Ofcom licenced Community Radio Station.

Subject to planning permission being granted by the BDCC, QUAY-FM will be adding a new aerial for the FM frequency at Fort Albert.

Station Manager Dougal Bohan said: “The new aerial will support the existing FM frequency (107.1) and possible future enhanced services such as DAB.”

QUAY-FM could also be broadcasting digitally to Alderney later this year. It was revealed that Alderney Broadcasting – the non-profit organisation behind Quay FM – has been in talks for some time with Nation Broadcasting (trading as Bailiwick Broadcasting Ltd in the Channel Islands) to bring Digital Audio Broadcasting (DAB) to Alderney later this year.

Further progress is dependent upon formal signing by the States of Alderney in respect of amendments to the lease on the transmitter site, which have been agreed in principle. (Confirmation of the States written agreement is expected imminently.)

DAB is a tried and tested technology which has been in use on the UK mainland and in Europe for a number of years. DAB signals are not subject to the atmospheric variations that FM signals sometimes suffer from, particularly in Summer!

QUAY-FM is already available digitally over internet streaming and  plans are taking shape to increase the sound quality of the internet signal by transmitting uncompressed in higher bandwidth, using FLAC technology.

At the meeting, volunteers heard about the significant amount of work required to achieve this objective both from a technical, managerial, and marketing perspective.

After an introduction by Nigel Roberts (member of the Alderney Broadcasting Board), a presentation was given by Brian Chambers, at echnical volunteer with Quay FM, setting out a roadmap describing the major areas of work that will need to be completed in the weeks and months ahead.

Nigel Roberts said: “QUAY-FM is such an important part of our island community. We need to ensure its secure future”.

Brian Chambers said: “The UK Government determined in 2017 that when 50% of the radio audience received their signal digitally, they would set a date for the closure of the FM network. That level was met before the end of 2017 and the FM network will be closed down. We need to be ready so that Quay FM continues to do what it has always done: serve the community”.

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