28th January 1981

Deputies meet to decide if they want BBC or an independent broadcaster

Both Jersey and Guernsey have their own BBC local radio stations, but it was by no means certain that either of them would allow the Corporation to use each Bailiwick’s airwaves.

Each island had been assigned a single medium wave (AM) frequency to use as required and, originally, there had been a push to use them to establish commercial stations, leaving no room for the national broadcaster.

An easy decision

Jersey decided fairly early on that this wasn’t the best course of action and, when the matter came up for discussion in the States, in January 1981, it was largely a formality. However, things were more complicated in Guernsey, where there was a stronger push to revisit the idea of commercial broadcasting. This was largely because the BBC had pared down what it was able to offer the islands from up to ten hours of Bailiwick-focused content each day to a single hour, with the stations simulcasting Radio 2 the rest of the time.

In the end, both islands decided the Beeb was best after all. BBC Radio Jersey went on the air the following year.


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Other events that occured in January