|Closed||13 March 2012|
|Owned by||City Channel Ltd. & Liberty Global|
|Picture format||PAL I standard|
|Country||Republic of Ireland|
|Broadcast area||Dublin, Galway, Cork and Waterford|
|Replaced by||RTÉ One +1|
|UPC Ireland||Channel 107|
City Channel was an Irish television network that began broadcasting in October 2005, which focused primarily on local and regional television. It operated three stations: City Channel Dublin, City Channel Galway, and Channel South. The channel was replaced by RTÉ One +1 on 13 March 2012.
City Channel was given a licence by the BCI (now the BAI) on 31 January 2005 and began broadcasting in October 2005.
City Channel was originally launched on the NTL and Chorus cable services in Dublin, Galway and Waterford, however all four services were available on the digital services of UPC Ireland. The company was also granted a licence for a fourth station called City 7, which would have been targeted at Dublin's Eastern Europeans[who?].
The Evening Show was City Channel's prime time early evening entertainment programme. It was presented by Jimmy Greeley, who also has radio programme on 4fm, and Olive Geoghegan. It was broadcast daily from Monday to Friday at 7pm and covered a wide range of topics. This was a great show which featured a lot of banter amongst the presenters. Although there were many rumours about why it was never shown on the weekends, this still remains a mystery.
The Guest List was City Channel's entertainment programme. Presented by Judy Gilroy and Olive Geoghegan, the show featured a strong mix of red carpet, fashion and music events. The show promoted Irish culture and gave out tips to the viewers with a cheap and effective range of items for your house. However, The Guest List was also controversial in its own way. Every episode featured a mysterious figure named 'The Scout' whose face would be blurred out, the Scout would pick out his 'Item of the Day'. Which was usually a great deal in local shops, which was great for small businesses to be getting publicity on a regional station. However, every Friday the Scout would choose an 'Item of the Week' which was normally a discount at a shop for all the city channel viewers.
Gay Nation was tailored specifically to the needs and tastes of the Gay Community. Each episode tackled the big issues affecting everyday gay life in Ireland, from marriage equality to job security. The programme aimed to appeal to all sections of the enormously diverse gay population and is presented by Joe Kearney. The show would have a break every 5 minutes and would feature advertisements aimed at the gay community which got very tedious and lost many viewers.
The Evening Show: Extra was a compilation of the best bits of City Channel's flagship programme 'The Evening Show'. Presented by Judy Gilroy, this programme took a look back at some of the most memorable moments of City Channel's flagship show. This was for the hardcore City Channel fans to watch over some of their favourite moments of City Channel. It was not recommended for viewers under 18.
"The Warehouse" was a show hosted by new comer to the presenting scene, Erich King. Each episode featured an interview with a comedian and a band in a sloppy warehouse to make it appear much more comforting which was great for new talent as bands and comedians were getting the chance to showcase their talent on a regional station, exposing them to many more people than usual. This was a new show to the station and lasted for 5 episodes before the controversy arose over the channel's overusage of the same movie and rumours about the channel's financial state quickly spread. The channel closed down in September 2011.
The company was headed by David Harvey, who also founded the original station and is based in Dublin.
In August 2007, Liberty Ventures, a subsidiary of Liberty Global, purchased a 35% stake in the company, saying that they were looking to expand the City Channel format to Central and Eastern Europe[who?].
In January 2010 it was announced that City Channel received €400,000 from its investors. The investment will be used to provide security for any difficult trading that may occur during 2010 for the channel, for a new joint venture with a UK partner and to help their fledgling production company city productions, which currently produces Xccelerate for 3e. It is hoped that such productions can be repeated on City Channel. Like the other Irish channels launched between 2005 and 2008, it has been through a "major trauma", Setanta Ireland having closed their UK channels, Channel 6 and Bubble Hits closing down.
In August 2011, City Channel announced they were in financial difficulties and were to begin to look to restructure their business. In September 2011, it was announced that City Channel will close. Towards the end David Harvey owned 45%, while 35% was owned by Liberty Global owners of UPC Ireland. The channel had hoped to be in the Black by 2008, however the economic climate in Ireland caused problems for the channel since 2009 with advertising sales plummeting by 50%. UPC will continue to broadcast the channel until its closure, and hopes to find a replacement for subscribers.
The channel ceased all operations on 13 March 2012, when the channel was replaced by RTÉ One +1 on the UPC Ireland EPG.
City Channel Dublin
City Channel Dublin was the first service to be launched, beginning broadcasting in October 2005. The station carried Dublin-specific programmes such as hourly news bulletins between 16:00 and 22:00 and a number of magazine programmes, in addition to what was available on the other channels and features its own late, late toy show at Christmas time which was presented by a mysterious man with a ponytail.
City Channel Galway
City Channel Galway launched in March 2006 after the initial success of the Dublin station. For the most part, the station broadcast the same programmes and movies which only the hardcore city channel fans watched. The more occasional viewers tuned in for the hourly news bulletins between 18:00 and 20:00, which focused on Galway City and County, and a number of magazine shows.
City Channel Waterford launched in March 2006 as well, but was expanded and renamed in November 2008 as Channel South, and was available in several counties: Clare, Cork, Kerry, Limerick, Tipperary and Waterford. The station shared a large amount of programming with City Channel, but also produced a number of its own programmes focusing on the south of the country, such as South Tonight, a daily news bulletin as well as some of the city channel classical moments.
Also referred to as City Channel Eastern Europe, City 7 was to be launched in early 2009 and would have screen programmes aimed at the large section of the Dublin community who are originally from Eastern Europe[where?]. The company's other stations already carried programmes, such as Oto Polska, which was a partial collaboration with the Polish broadcaster Telewizja Polska.
Due to cutbacks it was delayed until further notice.
- "New 'City Channel' For Irish Capital". iftn.ie. 31 January 2005. Retrieved 16 August 2011.
- RTÉ News, 08/12/08: 'New TV channel for Eastern Europeans'; retrieved 13 December 2008
- Irish Independent, 28/08/07: 'Liberty Global takes stake in City Channel'; retrieved 13 December 2008
- "City Channel gets €400k investment". Irish Independent. 14 January 2010.
- Reilly, Gavan. "City Channel in talks to secure further investment". thejournal.ie. Retrieved 16 August 2011.
- HANCOCK, CIARÁN (21 September 2011). "City Channel to close over advertising slump". Irish Times. Retrieved 21 September 2011.