NEWS23 May 2023

Commercial radio audience hits new high

Media News Trends UK

UK – Commercial radio has reached a record weekly audience of 38.7 million people in the UK, according to quarterly figures from commercial radio industry body Rajar.


The figures showed the first quarter of 2023 saw an audience increase of 1.5 million people compared with the same period the year before.

Commercial radio’s share of listening has also grown to a new record of 51.4%, up from 48.4% in the first quarter of 2022.

The share of commercial radio listening time taking place online is now 28%, which has for the first time surpassed analogue listening (AM/FM) at 27%.

For radio as a whole, total combined digital listening is 68%, of which 39.8% is DAB and 24.4% online.

Additionally, commercial radio now has six million listeners more than the BBC, up from 3.4m in the first three months of 2022, while the combined weekly audience for all radio in the UK was 49.4 million people, equivalent to 88% of the adult population.

Matt Payton, chief executive at Radiocentre, said: “There is real momentum behind radio and audio, with the industry stronger than ever thanks to the investment and innovation of radio groups and stations all over the UK. 

“This couldn’t be better news for advertisers and listeners alike. The continued growth of listening online and on smart speakers also demonstrates how important new legislation safeguarding UK radio is going to be for audiences.”