ResponseSource Blog

Radio more popular than ever

By Oli Townsend

13th February 2014

Category: Media analysis

The latest set of RAJAR listening figures for radio stations throughout the UK were published 6 February. The results show that despite the increase in alternatives available for people to consume news, entertainment, arts and music, that radio is succeeding in growing its popularity in the digital age.

More people than ever are listening to the radio

91% of the population listen to the radio on a weekly basis. That’s 48.4 million adults and the highest number since records began in 1999.

Digital on the rise

Traditional means of listening to the radio via FM/AM is decreasing with figures showing that 58.5% of listeners consume radio broadcasts in this way.

Radio listening via digital platforms is increasing, with 52% of the population, or 27.7 million people, tuning in on digital devices. This is an increase of 10% year-on-year.

DAB is the most popular digital platform, claiming 65% of all digital hours. Developments including the proposed launch of the national Digital Two network as well as the majority of new cars being fitted with digital radio as standard means that digital listening is expected to accelerate over the next two years.

BBC Radio 6 Music has the highest number of listeners of any digital-only station, with a weekly audience of 1.96 million. Absolute 80’s, recently acquired by Bauer Media, is the most listened to commercial digital-only station with 1.18 million listeners per week.


BBC Radio 2 has recorded an all-time high of 15.51 million weekly listeners and continues to be the UK’s most popular radio station. Flagship morning programme, the Chris Evans Breakfast Show, also achieved a record listenership of 9.82 million each week. Global Radio’s Capital FM Network is the most listened to commercial radio network with 7.5 million weekly listeners across the country.

In London

BBC Radio 4 is the most listened to radio station in London with 3.03 million weekly listeners. 95.8 Capital FM is the commercial station with the highest number of listeners per week at 2.16 million.


Data showing all radio listening, average hours per listener, digital share of all radio listening and location of listening.

 Source: RAJAR/Ipsos MORI/RSMB




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