Capital Manchester

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Capital Manchester
Capital FM Manchester.png
Broadcast areaGreater Manchester, Cheshire, Lancashire
Branding102 Capital
SloganManchester's No.1 Hit Music Station
FrequencyFM: 102.0 MHz
11C (Manchester)
12A (Lancashire)
RDS: Capital
First air date16 October 1994
FormatContemporary hit radio
Sister stationsHeart North West
Smooth North West
XFM Manchester
WebsiteCapital Manchester

Capital Manchester is a local radio station owned and operated by the Global Radio as part of the Capital radio network. The station broadcasts from their studios at Global's Manchester HQ in the XYZ Building in Spinningfields, Manchester.


The transmitter is on top of the City Tower in Piccadilly in Manchester, the same place as XS Manchester and Radio X's transmitter and all 3 services share the same broadcast antenna system which is located on the centre tower and is illuminated with red Aircraft warning lights at night.


The 102 MHz frequency in Manchester has a chequered background, initially it was occupied by Sunset 102 which included regular shows from house music innovators 808 State and a Saturday evening rave show from Sammy B; both were cited by Dave Haslam in City Life to have been instrumental in reflecting and developing the early rave culture in the city. However, due to occasional threats of violence on air and other breaches of the licence the station was closed.

The licence was re-advertised and quickly won by Faze FM who launched Kiss 102 on 16 October 1994. The licence win was spearheaded by Eugene Perera's Level Broadcast, aided by Mike Powell's Infinity Radio consultancy, and included shareholders UKRD, Eastern Counties Newspaper Group and 3i. Gary Burton, who had presented at Radio Trent for much of the 1980s and early 1990s, was Kiss 102's first breakfast presenter.[1]

The station became a victim of its own success when months after opening a second station, the Yorkshire regional Kiss 105, the station's board accepted a £17.6 million takeover bid from the Chrysalis Group in 1996 for a company that had cost just £600k to set up three years earlier.

Chrysalis rebranded the station as Galaxy 102 in 1997. Eleven days after the transfer of ownership, as a direct result of EMAP, the Kiss brand owners refused to franchise the Kiss name to Chrysalis. The music policy was toned down, integrating R'n'B into the playlist and dispensing with many of the specialist programmes and presenters. Nevertheless, their investment in advertising and change of music policy was able to grow the audience further.

The station was rebranded as Capital on 3 January 2011 as part of a merger of Global Radio's Galaxy and Hit Music networks to form the nine-station Capital network.[2]

On 1 June 2017, local programming moved from Salford to new studios at the XYZ Building in the Spinningfields district of Manchester City Centre. Capital Manchester shares facilities with sister station Heart North West and two Communicorp-owned stations, Smooth North West and XS Manchester.

Breakfast show presenters[edit]

Capital Manchester (2011–present)

  • Rob Ellis (Capital Breakfast with The Rob Ellis Show, 2011–present)[3]

Galaxy 102 (1997 - 2011)

  • Rob Ellis (The Rob Ellis Show, 2007 - 2011)[4]
    • Co-presented with Rachel Burke-Davies, Nigel "Wingman" Clucas, and 'Stand Up' Alex Boardman[5]
  • Wes Butters (2005 - 2007)[6]
    • Co-presented with Alex Boardman and 'Irish Alan' Toner
  • Simon "Nicksy" Nicks (Nicksy in the Morning, 2000 - 2005)[7]
    • Co-presented with Lynsey Horn and 'Irish Alan' Toner
  • Adam Cole (1997 - 2000)

Kiss 102 (1994 - 1997)

  • Adam Cole (1997)
  • Gary Burton (1994 - 1996)


Local programming is produced and broadcast from Capital's Manchester studios from 6-10am and 4-7pm on weekdays and 12-4pm at weekends. All networked programming originates from Global Radio's London headquarters, including the syndicated Vodafone Big Top 40 on Sunday afternoons.[8]

The station's local presenters are Rob Ellis, Rachel Burke-Davies and Nigel 'Wingman' Clucas (Capital Breakfast), Adam Brown (weekday drivetime) and James Hall (weekend afternoons).


Capital Manchester broadcasts hourly local news updates from 5am-7pm on weekdays and 7am-12pm at weekends with headlines on the half-hour between 5am and 9am weekdays. The Manchester newsroom also produces bulletins for Heart North West, Capital North West and Wales on the Wirral, Smooth North West and XS Manchester (owned by Communicorp).[9]

Notable former presenters[edit]


  1. ^ "GARY BURTON". Retrieved 2018-09-25.
  2. ^ Global Radio takes Capital national, Brand Republic, 13 September 2010
  3. ^ "Capital Manchester Breakfast With Rob Ellis". Capital Manchester. Retrieved 2018-09-25.
  4. ^ "Breakfast changes at Galaxy – RadioToday". Retrieved 2018-09-25.
  5. ^ "Biography". Alex Boardman - Stand Up Comic, Writer and Performer. 2010-06-21. Retrieved 2018-09-25.
  6. ^ Day, Julia (2005-09-27). "Butters back north with Galaxy". the Guardian. Retrieved 2018-09-26.
  7. ^ News, Manchester Evening (2005-09-26). "Breakfast DJ is axed". men. Retrieved 2018-09-25.
  8. ^ Capital FM - Manchester public file
  9. ^ Capital FM - Manchester public file
  10. ^ Dave Kelly to replace Neil Fitzmaurice at Radio City Archived 2 August 2012 at at
  11. ^ Margherita Taylor swaps Capital for Heart Radio Today, 22 December 2011

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 53°27′57″N 2°16′54″W / 53.465775°N 2.281683°W / 53.465775; -2.281683 (102 Capital FM Manchester)