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Wednesday 24 January 2018

Radio La La – Listeners turning off news at breakfast new listenership figures show

Allison Bray and Ken Sweeney

RADIO listeners are skipping news and current affairs at breakfast and saving it for later in the day, the latest listenership figures reveal.

The switch to lighter morning chat shows has seen the number of listeners to popular TodayFM morning man Ray D'Arcy hit an all-time high of 255,000 after 6,000 more listeners tuned in to his mid-morning show over the past three months.

The station's breakfast show with Ian Dempsey has been boosted by the same number while over at 2fm Hector has drawn another 8,000 listeners to his 'Breakfast with Hector' show.


Even 2fm's Ryan Tubridy, who has been losing listeners since he took over from the late Gerry Ryan, had cause to celebrate the latest Joint National Listenership Research (JNLR) figures published yesterday. They showed a modest increase of 3,000 listeners for his show.

"It was a massive, dramatic change to people's morning soundscape," Mr Tubridy said of the sudden death of the station's popular "shock jock".

"That's why it's taken quite a while to get used to it, and now finally, they are starting to get used to me," he said.

But the switch to lighter morning programmes has come at the expense of more serious news and current affair programmes including RTE Radio One's flagship 'Morning Ireland', which lost 5,000 listeners as did veteran presenter Pat Kenny's 'Today with Pat Kenny' show.

John Murray's self-titled morning show also took a hit of 7,000 Radio One listeners while over at Newstalk, George Hook also suffered a loss of 5,000 listeners.

Weekend morning shows also suffered with Marian Finucane's self-titled show on RTE One on Sunday mornings suffering a whopping loss of 23,000 listeners while another 1,000 listeners abandoned her on Saturday morning show.

Miriam O'Callaghan also lost 16,000 listeners to her 'Miriam Meets' programme on Sunday morning.

But the figures also reveal that listeners are keen to catch up with the latest news as the day progresses.

Some 11,000 more listeners were keen to "talk to Joe" on Joe Duffy's 'Liveline' phone-in show on RTE Radio One while the popular 'News At One' drew another 7,000 listeners.

Mid- to late afternoon news and current affairs shows also did well with 'Drivetime with Mary Wilson' gaining 14,000 listeners while another 8,000 more listeners tuned in to 'The Last Word' with Matt Cooper on TodayFM. Six thousand more listeners spent the mid-afternoon with Tony Fenton on the same station to the loss of Sean Moncrieff, whose afternoon time slot on Newstalk lost 5,000 listeners.

Irish Independent

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