RTÉ Radio 1 will end longwave service on April 14, 2023

RTÉ Radio 1 long wave 252 service to end next month (Source: RTÉ)

RTÉ has announced that it is ceasing the long wave 252 service for Radio 1 from next month.

The move was originally announced in 2014 but was postponed because of protests from Irish organisations in Britain.

RTÉ said in a statement that the LW 252 is no longer sustainable as the transmitter in Summerhill, Co Meath uses up 2.5% of the organisation’s energy use.

The current cost is €250,000 a year and this could rise to £400,000 next year, it says.

When the move was announced originally there were complaints from Irish people in Britain, particularly the elderly, who would no longer be able to get RTÉ Radio 1 on their transistor radios.

The closure was deferred – initially for three years – but the long wave service will now end on Friday 14 April.

However Radio 1 will be available in Britain to listeners on Freestat (channel 750), Sky (channel 0160) and Virgin Media (channel 917).

It will also be available on streaming devices including RTÉ Radio Player and Irish Radio player apps.

In Ireland it will continue to be available on FM as well as through TV channels and online. [Continue reading at RTÉ…]

RTÉ Radio 1 names the day to turn off 252 Long Wave (Source: Radio Today)

RTÉ Radio 1 will cease broadcasting on Long Wave 252 from Friday 14th April 2023.

The station continues to broadcast on FM, on Saorview and Saorsat, along with RTÉ Radio Player and Irish Radioplayer apps.

In the UK, Radio 1 will still be available on Freesat, Sky, and Virgin Media, along with online streaming services such as smart speakers.

The phasing out and closure of the Long Wave service was one of the recommendations of the Future of Media Commission Report which was published by the Government in July 2022. This was part of a wider recommendation aimed at ensuring RTÉ could invest available resources in innovation and digital services. [Continue reading at Radio Today…]


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9 thoughts on “RTÉ Radio 1 will end longwave service on April 14, 2023

  1. Tony Glazier

    A solar farm might generate about 800W per square metre. But that is only during up to eight hours a day of sunlight IF it is not cloudy.

    There is no cheap way to store energy available.

    A medium or long wave transmitter needs at least 150 kW of input power and that is usually for 24 hours a day. So no solar farm would ever be able to generate and store enough power to supply a transmitter.

    1. Ken English

      I was talking about those huge commercial solar farms that can supply tens of megawatts to the regional power companies.
      It would have to be a cooperative effort between RTE, as the property owner, and the local power company or government.

  2. Lawrence Harris

    I agree with the above comments too. I live in Germany and my little all-waveband tranny radio is all that I have to listen to in bed at night. I can operate it in my sleep without having to fumble with smartphones and laptops.
    I always used to like listening to RTE1 LW , but now the signal is too weak to enjoy anymore, and regrettably, it will soon be gone altogether. Maybe they could wait a few more years until all we ‘grey head’ listeners are long dead, so it won’t matter anymore. RTE1 MW was also received at a good signal strength, which I listened to regularly.

    All these fancy digital and satellite channels are useless. Nothing can beat a simple, push-button transistor radio!

    As someone mentioned above, all the MW channels are now being used by Eastern European broadcasters.

    In the past, radio stations used to be proud that ex-pat people in faraway places could hear their broadcasts. I always regarded the Irish as international people from their historical movements, but it seems they are becoming isolationists now.


  3. Drew

    another western Am transmission shuts. Meanwhile in Russia MW transmitters are reactivated to broadcast to the west. Radio France Internationale has reactivated SW transmitters for its african listeners where FM relays have been closed because of political rage against the “colonialists” (with Rusiia and China pushing he lcal governments to give the frequency to independent news radios like radio russia or radio china)
    When the digital bug happens everybody will ask: how come there s no radio anymore ?

    1. qwertyamdx

      Actually, RFI did not close down their SW transmissions. So they were not reactivated – they are going as usual. As for RTÉ, they explicitly stated they don’t even have any listening figures for LW. Which means all these arguments based on greenwashing tactics are just made-up excuses for a decision that was taken before – to turn off LW for the sake of turning off LW.

  4. Mark

    “Further investment into the mast and transmitter, which is no longer fit for purpose and has a significant carbon emission footprint, would significantly impair RTÉ’s ability to meet the emissions reductions target required to contribute to the National Climate Action Plan.”

    Yeah pull the other one Dee Forbes, banging the Climate Change drum, a licence to do anything. the transmitter is a solid state design of 300 Kw, power was reduced to 100 Kw or less 50 Kw at night or less.

    RTE are constantly banging on about how we must stop climate change as if a small Island nation will have any impact but they are a very successful brainwashing platform so once they say emissions the public will go along with it.

    I work in the data center industry, if you think that a data center is going to help you reduce emissions you must be seriously retarded or think taxpayers are stupid……… Data centres consume up to hundreds of times the amount of electricity of even a 1 MW AM transmitter.

    Dee Forbes, RTE apps are crap and the content of your programming is crap, and you want to charge us more than the 160 Euro’s a year for a so called TV license.

    Dee Forbes has gone so far as to suggest scrapping the TV license and increasing property tax this way there can be no avoiding paying Dee her extra cash to try to keep RTE going.

    I suppose at the end of the day there is hardly anyone who listens to LW, most modern cars don’t even have MW but many do and many homes still have radios capable of MW and it was a mistake to shut down 567 Khz due to the fact there were many more MW radios in cars and homes all over the Island and RTE could have continued to use it to broadcast different programming to FM.

    In an attempt to justify the closure of 567 Khz, RTE went to a local electronics store and asked a young sales Man when was the last time someone came in looking for a medium wave radio and the man naturally said that no one ever asked him for a medium wave radio, well, of course no one has because anyone who bought radios at that time naturally assumed it would have at least AM/FM and so would not ask for a medium wave specific radio.

    There was a day RTE were decent but they have become intolerable since they decided to go anti Male, Anti Christian and it has backfired. Frankly I would love to see RTE go fully commercial and stop wasting tax payers money.

    Anyway, at least LW outlived DAB which was another joke because RTE never rolled it out nationwide and the quality was horrible, MP2 @ 56 Kbps not even MP3.

  5. Des Walsh

    The Chekia authorities had the decency to have a long run-in to longwave closure by running transmission at a lower power level for some months prior to ceasing transmission. RTE could have lowered power level again with longer advise of closure. Of course they should have moved away from the 252kHz allocation years ago to escape the terrible CCI from the Algerian transmissions on the same frequency. I hope they keep the Clarkestown facility in reserve in case the digital systems fail or are
    There are now no medium wave transmissions on the island and many will miss longwave transmission.
    Des Walsh

    1. Ken English

      They seem to have a pretty huge transmitter site, and they say they have no plans to demolish the tower.
      Why not create a solar power farm there, to power the transmitter site, as well as the surrounding town?
      That would keep things “green”, and please a lot of folks.


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