Who is ELED?
ELED is a consortium of established community radio operators who have got together to apply to operate the North East London and South West Essex small scale DAB multiplex.
Doesn't London and Essex already have DAB?
Yes - but there are currently very few companies operating the multiplexes which transmit stations on DAB. This means that the cost of new stations being carried on DAB is very high and in many cases prohibitive.
Ofcom has recognised the lack of competition, and has offered licences for dozens of new small scale DAB multiplexes across the UK. This will bring down costs and widen listener choice.
How will this benefit the community?
Very few community radio stations are currently on DAB due to the high cost of carriage from existing operators.
ELED will offer considerably lower carriage rates, with further discounts for not-for-profit stations.
At least 7 community radio stations will be carried on the new service, reaching nearly a million new listeners each.
Does ELED have the experience to deliver this?
There are only two community radio stations in the licence area - Phoenix FM and Gateway 97.8, which have 30 years experience of broadcasting on FM between them.
ELED has been put together by these two stations. The aim is to deliver a genuine community-led application to Ofcom.
When will the new service start?
ELED expect to hear if they are successful in early 2024 and will aim to get the new service on air as soon as possible after this date.