|First air date||30 May 2006 (commercial broadcast)|
|Format||Soul Music, Speech|
Colourful Radio is a commercial radio station located in London, broadcasting on DAB across Birmingham, Manchester and soon, London and via the Internet. Colourful Radio's output is split between news, current affairs and urban music hit-list. It has also formerly broadcast to the Greater London area on DAB Digital Radio.
Founded in 2002 by Kofi Kusitor MBE, Colourful Radio was officially revealed in January 2004 as one of the UK's first internet audio streams. Legal commercial broadcast licences for London-wide and UK DAB were also gained in the same year.
In September 2005, Henry Bonsu (former presenter of BBC London 94.9) joined the station as presenter of its Drivetime show.
Following a live presenter-led pilot in October 2005, Colourful Radio officially launched as a fully-fledged legal commercial radio station on 30 May 2006 with a mostly speech-heavy schedule online and on BSKYB satellite.
With commercial radio changing rapidly, Colourful Radio obtained its DAB capacity in May 2008.
In August 2008, Gordon McNamee (formerly director of Kiss FM) was invited by Colourful Radio to refresh its line up and help improve its music output.
Under a deal agreed by Mr Kusitor, Colourful Radio officially launched on London DAB on 2 March 2009, with Gordon Mac as Head of Station reporting to Mr Kusitor. Director and Head of Programmes was Henry Bonsu (former presenter of BBC London 94.9).
In March 2011, Colourful Radio parted company with Gordon Mac.
Colourful Radio has received great reviews from, among others, The Guardian.
After 5 years of DAB broadcast, on 25 January 2014 Colourful withdrew from DAB in London as increasing platform costs got too much for the burgeoning station. Within a week of launching a listener appeal to raise enough funds to take up its new one-year DAB contract, the station's founder withdrew the appeal preferring instead to grow the station organically.
The station re-structured, moved to new studios, and began rebuilding process. In February 2017, the station joined DAB in Manchester and in March DAB in Birmingham.
- Radio Today | Industry News | "DAB Radio now in full colour"
- Johnny Dee, "Colourful radio makes for bright listening", The Guardian (TV & Radio Blog), 3 April 2009.
- Colourful Radio website
- Elizabeth Pears, "Is Ethnic Media Becoming An Endangered Species?" The Voice, 19 October 2013.
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