Absolute Radio Classic Rock
|Broadcast area||United Kingdom|
|Slogan||Rock's Greatest Hits.|
|Frequency||990, 1017 & 1152 AM (Birmingham, Wolverhampton and Shropshire)|
DAB: 11B (Greater London)
Virgin Media: 952
|First air date||2000|
|Sister stations||Absolute Radio|
Absolute Radio 60s
Absolute Radio 70s
Absolute Radio 80s
Absolute Radio 90s
Absolute Radio 00s
Absolute Radio Extra
Formerly known as Virgin Radio Classic Rock, it originally was an internet-only radio station, and launched in 2000 under the name Virgin Classic by Lee Roberts, SMG Radio Director. On DAB Digital Radio in London, the station launched at 12:15pm with Richard Skinner introducing Steppenwolf's "Born to Be Wild". The launch time, presenter, and song (though not the artist) were identical to its parent station Virgin Radio.
On 1 September 2008 it was announced that Virgin Radio Classic Rock would be rebranded as Absolute Classic Rock on 29 September 2008.
On 10 December 2010 Absolute Classic Rock expanded on DAB from London, taking over from Global Radio owned Gold on DAB in the North of England where there were 10 million potential new listeners on DAB in Newcastle, Sunderland, Darlington, Middlesbrough, Leeds, Hull, Scunthorpe, Grimsby, York, Huddersfield, Doncaster, Harrogate, Bradford, Sheffield, Blackburn, Preston, Blackpool, Bolton, Lancaster, Liverpool, Chester, Wrexham (North Wales) and Warrington
On 20 December 2010 Absolute Classic Rock launched on DAB to a potential new 3 million new listeners in Ayr, Bath, Cardiff, Coventry and Exeter.
In 2011 it was confirmed by Ofcom that to accommodate the launch of new sister station Absolute Radio 60s, the reduction of the broadcast bitrate of Absolute Classic Rock would be permitted on the various multiplexes on which it broadcasts.
West Midlands changes
On 7 January 2019, Free Radio 80s closed down and was replaced by Absolute Classic Rock on 990, 1017 & 1152 AM and DAB in Birmingham, Wolverhampton and Shropshire. This is the first time that the station has been available on analogue radio.
Notable former presenters
- "Virgin launches online classic". Broadcast. 4 December 2000.
- Barnett, Emma (1 September 2008). "Plans revealed to rebrand Virgin Radio as Absolute". Brand Republic. Archived from the original on 7 September 2008. Retrieved 1 September 2008.
- "Changes to Absolute Classic Rock and Absolute Radio 00s". One Golden Square. 21 November 2011.
- Ofcom radio broadcast licensing update for October 2011, published 1 Nov 2011 Archived 3 April 2012 at the Wayback Machine
- BAUER MEDIA TO LAUNCH THE GREATEST HITS RADIO NETWORK Bauer Media, 15 November 2018
- Bauer Media to launch Greatest Hits Radio network Radio Today, 15 November 2018