Sky News Radio
Sky News Radio is the radio arm of the Sky News division of British Sky Broadcasting. It has been operating since June 1999, providing a news bulletin service for UK commercial radio stations operators across the UK and for a number of English-speaking radio stations across the world.
Sky News Radio launched in June 1999 originally providing bespoke bulletins for Talk Radio UK. The service subsequently expanded in October 2001 to provide hourly news bulletins, audio and scripts for clients including UTV Radio, GMG Radio, Global Radio (Heart, LBC, Capital), and DNN.
On 15 October 2008, IRN announced it was switching its main supplier of news from ITN to Sky News Radio, expanding its customer client list by more than 280 stations and giving it a near-monopoly in UK commercial radio news provision.
The new IRN service began at 1400 on Tuesday 3 March 2009, with the first bulletin read by Ursula Hansford and simulcast on Sky News television. Bulletin duration was reduced from three minutes to two minutes, and the previous IRN 90 overnight and weekend bulletin service was dropped.
Audio cuts are distributed to stations via the IRN Net Newsroom and Sky News Radio FTP websites. Stations can also source their own audio cuts from Sky News and Sky Sports News television. Post-bulletin Newslink adverts are managed by Global Radio.
IRN operates two audio channels on the Sirius satellite: IRN1 transmits the hourly news bulletins and live sports reports. IRN2 transmits press conferences and live events.
IRN1 is also broadcast on an audio channel on the Astra 2B satellite.
In the event of a major news story (e.g. royal death or major terrorist incident), audio from Sky News television will be relayed on IRN1 and IRN2 with extended radio bulletins broadcast on the hour and additional two minute bulletins on the half-hour.
IRN supplies match reports from every Premier League match, with reporters supplied by sports radio agency World Sports Communications. A classified football results check is broadcast every Saturday at 1705.
Many community, student and hospital radio stations around the UK take the hourly bulletin service. Copy and audio cuts are also used by BFBS Radio, in addition to radio stations in the Republic of Ireland, Spain, Cyprus, UAE, South Africa and Australia.
Proposed radio station
In 2001, BSkyB proposed to become a partner in DAB news station DNN. This deal fell through, although Sky News Radio did become the main national news supplier to DNN. The station closed in July 2006, and was replaced on the MXR multiplexes by London speech station LBC 97.3.
In March 2007, BSkyB and Chrysalis Radio announced a new joint partnership to launch a dedicated Sky News Radio station on the proposed bid by Channel 4's 4 Digital Group for the second UK DAB multiplex.
Chrysalis's existing London rolling news station, LBC News 1152, was to be re-branded "Sky News Radio for London". A large amount of programming was planned to be shared with the national DAB service.
However, following the sale of Chrysalis Radio's stations to Global Radio, chief executive Ashley Tabor announced in October 2007 that the contract was not commercially attractive and they would not be continuing with the proposals.
- Major expansion for Sky News Radio
- "BSkyB and Chrysalis to launch “Sky News Radio”". Sky News. 28 March 2007. Archived from the original on 23 June 2007. Retrieved 4 March 2007.
- "LBC News to become Sky News Radio". Radio Today. 3 April 2007. Retrieved 3 April 2007.
- Chrysalis sells three radio stations, Daily Telegraph, 26 June 2007
- Sky News Radio complications, Radio Today, 18 October 2007
- Sky News Radio plan in doubt, The Guardian, 19 October 2007