Former Spirit FM presenters brought on board new Chichester-based radio station

Presenters who lost their jobs following a major rebranding of Chichester-based Spirit FM this summer today announced they were launching their own station to serve the people of West Sussex.

Wednesday, 28th October 2020, 10:17 am
Updated Wednesday, 28th October 2020, 12:13 pm
The team at V2

V2 Radio will be home to local radio professionals including Ian Crouch, Neale Bateman and Nick Hobbs. Available online and DAB across Sussex from January 2021.

After Spirit FM was bought by Bauer Media the brand was replaced by Greatest Hits Radio with critics saying it had lost its local identity after serving West Sussex for 24 years.

There was a massive public outcry at the changes including strong condemnation by this newspaper. But Bauer refused to change their plans.

Ian Crouch worked at Spirit FM since inception and said he can’t wait to get back to entertaining and informing the county: “We are incredibly excited to launch this brand new station, V2 Radio. V2 Radio will serve the good people of West Sussex, we have built it from nothing and hope it will fill a massive gap that has been left.

"Our intention is to give as much back to the County as we can."

Originally named ‘Regis Radio’ the concept grew from super serving Bognor Regis, to catering for the county as a whole.

The station will have a broad appeal to an audience passionate about local issues, news and events together with a mix of familiar music from the last five decades. V2 will be available across all of the main digital on-line platforms as well as DAB.

Programmes will be presented by veterans of the broadcasting industry, already well known to listeners in Sussex, with a wealth of experience of providing radio services locally, nationally and internationally.

V2 Radio will have a strong community ethos - getting involved in local events, the arts and festivals, being visible through regular outside broadcasts and supporting local businesses and charities.

A spokesperson said their mission was to make a real difference locally by:

- Bringing back 'proper local radio' to the area;

- Generating significant donations for our charitable causes, with ten per cent of station earnings being used directly for local causes through our 'local community chest';

- Being the destination station for local news, travel information, and entertainment programming;

- Featuring a broad spectrum of popular music from the 1960s to today, as well as entertaining and informative programming relevant to the local area.

V2 Radio will launch in January 2021 with presenters who have all previously broadcast on Spirit FM including Milly Luxford, Steve Freegard, Gary Booker and Peter Phillips.

"Listeners can tune in on DAB, via an app, computer or a range of other platforms including smart speaker. We do need funding to help cover the cost of bringing back a Proper Local Radio station though which you can listen to at home, in the car and at work," a spokesman for the station said.

"Your money will help pay for broadcast equipment, digital listening platforms (including DAB) and initial start-up costs.In the spirit of helping us get started we have set up a Crowdfunder Page which you can find at www.v2radio.co.uk."

Special packages will also be available for local businesses who wish to be involved. We know times are hard but any amount you can spare will ensure we bring back Proper Local Radio to West Sussex as soon as possible."