Sunday 21 January 2018

It’s official – Joe Duffy is the King of the Airwaves with top listenership figures

Joe Duffy. Photo: Paul Sharp/Sharpix
Joe Duffy. Photo: Paul Sharp/Sharpix
Kirsty Blake Knox

Kirsty Blake Knox

It’s official – Joe Duffy is the King of the Airwaves – according to the latest radio ratings.

The Joint National Listenership Research (JNLR) ratings saw Joe’s popular Liveline show increase by 4,000 to an impressive 395,000.

Speaking about the increase Duffy said it is the “callers, listeners and my team” that make the show a success.

The highest rating overall show remains RTE’s Morning Ireland with 444,000 listeners – despite dropping 5,000 when compared to the last book of ratings issued in July.

Pat Kenny also saw his figures increase by 15,000 to 146,000 but this substantial increase is partially due to the programme extending an hour in length.

Miriam O’Callaghan was also delighted to see her ratings rise by 7,000 to 254,000.

“It’s all my team,” she said. “They do all the hard work. I’m delighted when I hear that shows fronted by women are holding strong as it proves that listeners want female voices. For years I was told people didn’t want to listen and I know that is complete rubbish.”

Other broadcasters and station bosses were not as impressed with the latest figures.

In fact, the head of 2FM Dan Healy described today’s ratings book as “radio carnage”.

Today FM and 2FM saw listenership fall across the majority of their prime time shows.

Ian Dempsey saw his figures fall by 7,000 to 173,000 while Matt Cooper dropped 3,000 to 136,000.

Anton Savage slumped to 166,000 – that’s a loss of 8,000 compared to figures from July and a drop of 25,000 when compared to ratings dating from October 2015.

The Nicky Byrne Show with Jenny Greene also dipped by 5,000 to 131,000 and there were losses for Tracey Clifford who saw 4,000 less listeners tune into her 1pm afternoon show bringing overall ratings to 110,000.

“We are disappointed – we invested a lot in 2FM’s presence at Electric Picnic and unfortunately that hasn’t been reflected in this book,” Healy said.

But it was good news for Ray D’Arcy who saw his numbers increase by 5,000 to 216,000 when compared to ratings three months ago.

RTE’s Sunday Sport increased the most dramatically with an additional 21,000 tuning in, bringing their overall listenership up to 189,000. 

Newstalk’s radio schedule has undergone a “seismic reshuffle” in recent months with a new slate of presenting talent takin to the airwaves.

The placement of certain shows within the schedule have also changed.   

This obviously impacts on figures and explains why some programmes appear to have decreased significantly.

Newstalk Breakfast’s new line up of Colette Fitzpatrick, Paul Williams, Alan Quinlan and Shane Coleman pulled in average ratings of 115,000.

This is a drop of 48,000 when compared to the stations previous Breakfast Show fronted by Ivan Yeats and Chris Donoghue which rated at 163,000.

A spokesperson for the station defended the drop saying it was a result of the show reducing in duration by one hour.

“It is just not possible to compare the schedule,” a spokesperson for the stations said. “Breakfast is now an hour shorter than Chris and Ivan’s programme and that is going to be reflected in the ratings.

“We will not be contrasting today’s ratings with ratings issued three months ago as they are not comparable.”

“Shows that have not changed – like Off the Ball - have increased (from 47,000 to 50,000)”.

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