Founders of High Peak Radio announce plans to launch new online station serving northwest Derbyshire

The original founders of High Peak Radio have announced that they are to launch a brand new online station to serve north west Derbyshire.

By Ed Dingwall
Friday, 25th June 2021, 4:22 pm

Brothers Paul and Steve Jenner have already begun confirming the presenting line-up for Peak Sound Radio, which will cover the High Peak and Hope Valley from a local studio.

Many of High Peak Radio’s former star presenters will be joining the new venue, including Barry Jarvis and Helen Mason, who will share breakfast show duties with Paul, Steve and Mark Atherton.

Paul said: “We feel there is a real call for a truly local radio service of the kind we offered to the High Peak for 15 years. The recent sale of the local commercial radio services to a large media company with national-scale branding makes this even more crucial.

Peak Sound Radio will serve listeners who are increasingly accessing content online rather than through traditional broadcast technology. (Photo: Getty Images)

“We’ve gone out of our way to attract many of the most popular broadcasters from that time and intend to present a service which is genuinely and unashamedly local in terms of where it comes from and who it serves.”

More news on Peak Sound’s line-up and launch will be released soon, but the decision has already been taken to skip traditional broadcast technology in favour of online access.

Paul said: “Things have moved on now, FM is clearly on the way out and DAB doesn’t seem to be having a fraction of the impact initially expected – particularly in rural areas such as our own.

“The statistics don’t lie. More and more people are making the switch. Radio is alive and well and growing rapidly. Radios, though, are very much old tech. That’s why we’re concentrating on offering our service online – either through smart speakers such as Alexa, internet radio from your computer, laptop, tablet or through your mobile phone, including in your car by using an AUX lead.”

Steve (left) and Paul Jenner. (Photo: Allan McKay)

He added: “That’s where today’s listener is, and very shortly that’s where we’ll be for everyone in the High Peak and Hope Valley.

“We intend to deliver a locally – focussed, locally – broadcast service with the high professional standards we have always maintained and which commercial advertisers rightly insist upon. We have the team to do it and the technology to deliver. And we won’t be keeping quiet about it over the next few weeks.”

High Peak Radio first aired in 2004, and in 2019 owners Like Media merged with it with sister stations in Ashbourne and Stockport and relaunched as Imagine Radio.

In June, Imagine was taken over by national media giant Bauer which plans to split in half and rebrand one part as Greatest Hits Radio High Peak and the Derbyshire Dales later this year.

Dee Ford, group managing director of Bauer Radio, said: “Greatest Hits Radio is home to much-loved presenters, including Simon Mayo, who has just been announced as being the recipient of an MBE for his services to radio broadcasting.

“Having expanded FM coverage of the station into London, we’re delighted to be able to bring even greater access to the station to listeners in the North West and East Midlands. Creating further scale for advertisers, we’re also committed to ensuring listeners have access to local information and news for the long-term.”

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