BBC Radio Stations Broadcasting Re-Tune Instructions

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Bill Hemphill (WD9EQD), who writes:

Hi Thomas,

The BBC in their transition to digital radio has started closing some of their AM radio stations.

See following link:

The AM stations being closed are broadcasting “Re-Tune” instructions on their frequencies.

Not sure how long they will be doing this. The “Re-Tune” messages are interesting.

I have used the G4DYA KiwiSDR web receiver to listen and record some of the “Re-Tune” messages.

Most are just straight forward instructions, but Radio Hereford-Worcester on 738 has recorded individual

messages by several of their on-air personalities. The messages just loop continuously.

Attached are MP3 files for 738 Radio Hereford-Worcester, 1035 Radio Sheffield, 1341 Radio Ulster and 1503 Radio Stoke.


Bill Hemphill, WD9EQD


738 Radio Hereford-Worcester

1035 Radio Sheffield

1341 Radio Ulster

1503 Radio Stoke

Thank you so much for taking the time to make these recordings and for sharing them with us here!

Spread the radio love

4 thoughts on “BBC Radio Stations Broadcasting Re-Tune Instructions

  1. Mark

    rte are hell bent on ridding us of the awfulness that is Am, LW 252 Khz is going off air for around 2 months, I think June and July for maintenance, probably one of the best maintained masts out there, it’s probably a scream test like we use in Data Centers where you switch off servers for 5 days and if no one screams after 5 days you’re laughing, out they go for recycling and if if someone later discovers they can’t access their data then too bad, they’ve been notified months in advance. So I bet not many are going to contact RTE wondering where 252 is gone so they could use this to keep it off air permanently.

    As younger and younger People take charge of these Broadcast companies they don’t see any point keeping such ancient technology. I can’t even imagine many people in their 20’s today listening to any form of radio and probably never tuned a radio on LW or MW, never mind shortwave.

    In Europe at least, MW/LW is fast approaching death, soon there will be no English broadcasts to hear.

  2. Dafydd Jones

    So,it’s just online for Radio Ulster! I used to listen on mw. Using a tecsun loop enabled me to listen during the day & boosted the signal towards dusk. It didn’t seem to make any difference to Radio Scotland,though. I live in Wales and I used to listen to Radio Cornwall from midday. The loop boosted the signal so it sounded like it was coming from a transmitter nearby. Coincidentally,when they dropped mw they changed the schedule. I didn’t like the new line-up (it seemed dumbed down) so I wouldn’t have wanted to listen to it much,anyway! So,fortunately,it didn’t bother me. It will be Radio Scotland,before long! I like mw,lw and sw. I like the sound quality. The feeling of something struggling through the atmosphere to reach me. The interference and fading is all part of the thrill. The voices of a foreign radio station intruding all adding to the atmosphere and glamour,believe it or not?! Although,the interference fromm Algiers on Rte Radio 1 on Lw from dusk,is too much even for me! And doesn’t make sense if you’re trying to reach the Irish diaspora (But then Rte want an excuse to switch off the transmitter,don’t they?!) Listening on the internet just isn’t the same.,for me! Although,I’d listen on fm or DAB,if I was in the target areas. Of course,young people want crystal clear sound quality. They think old fogey’s like me are nutters wanting to listen radio signals coming from transmitters outside their target areas. They don’t want to fiddle around with aerials and loops. That said,I still think there’s a case for some international broadcasting via shortwave transmitters. The debacle over Radio Australia a case in point! And look what happened to Radio Canada International! All India Radio is probably the next to go! I think they should bear this in mind. There might even be a case for Rte Radio 1 on lw? The transmitter covers such a huge range. You don’t need wi-fi,a subscription. You can listen to it anywhere,for next to nothing. A house,caravan,tent,on the move (via a pocket radio) or even a cardboard box under a bridge! Allot of the elderly diaspora don’t want to buy a dab radio. And the dab radio coverage Rte wanted will only cover small areas of the uk. Will Rte even get that now,post Brexit? If they moved the frequency of the transmitter a tad and boosted it up,they wouldn’t need it anyway! As to Radio 4 on lw? I read an article by someone on a hiking holiday in France. He was able to listen to Radio 4 on a portable radio,while out walking. The range of those transmitters is incredible. I wonder how many listeners France Inter,really lost,when they switched off their lw transmitter? It whacked into West Wales during the day. I used to listen to it on a pocket radio,while out and about. I can’t understand French,but they used to play some great music.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.