|Defunct radio station in Australia|
|Slogan||Australia's Digital Voice|
|Format||Classic hits, talk radio|
First air date
Last air date
|21 July 2006|
Radio 2 was a narrowband Australian radio network owned and operated by WorldAudio Limited. The network was broadcast on frequencies between 1611 and 1629 kHz via a series of 50 AM transmitters across Australia, as well as by satellite (including through Austar and Foxtel) and through the network's website.
Radio 2 began in Blacktown, New South Wales in Western Sydney on 1611 AM in October 2001, broadcasting under a Section 40 licence - meaning it could only operate on narrowband AM frequencies (1611–1701 kHz), and with narrow spectrum - 5 kHz, rather than the full 9 kHz which other commercial radio stations use. Branded "The New Voice Of Western Sydney", the station focused on live and local content, similar to 2WS in its heyday.
In 2002, Radio 2 was a broadcast partner of the 2002 FIFA World Cup, broadcasting live coverage of matches, with the call lead by Colin Turner. In 2003, Radio 2 was a broadcast partner of the AFL, hosting live coverage of Sydney Swans home games from the SCG and Telstra Stadium.
In November 2003, owners WorldAudio Limited acquired a series of 14 additional transmitters, forming a "national" commercial AM radio network. This did not come without drama - a legal battle had begun between owners WorldAudio and GB Radio in Melbourne, over the use of the 1620 AM licence - WorldAudio would eventually use 1629 AM in Melbourne instead. In April 2005, owners WorldAudio signed Mikey Robins and Ian Rogerson to host The Big Australian Breakfast, Nick Bennett to host the Nick's Nation drive show, and former Seven Nightly News presenter Ross Symonds to host Sunday morning business program The Bottom Line.
In May 2005, the station launched nationally to a network of 50 stations around the country, dropping the Western Sydney focus and moving to programming of national significance. At launch, WorldAudio CEO boasted the station "[could] be picked up by 93% of all radio receivers." Additional programming included Sportswatch Australia with Colin Turner, She Said with Sophie Falkiner and Katrina Warren, and Politically Direct with Paul Makin. The network had an emphasis on sporting coverage, with coverage of A-League and English Premier League soccer, AFL (including Sydney Swans and Brisbane Lions games, plus the 2005 AFL Grand Final), and the NBL.
Downfall and closure
However, the network's success wasn't to be. A combination of minimal listenership and low advertising lead to a trading halt being placed on parent company WorldAudio, with the announcement that administrators had been appointed to the company a week later. Administrators halted all talk based content, leaving the station to broadcast non-stop music.
Radio 2 temporarily ceased broadcasting as of Friday, 21 July 2006. Broadcasting on the WorldAudio Groups licences will resume at Christmas 2006. Administrators Hall Chadwick are selling off World Audio's Radio 2's studio equipment at auction.— Radio 2 website, 21 July 2006
Availability (at time of closure)
- Pearlman, Jonathan (31 May 2002). "Small radio station scores World Cup, but few will hear the call". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 11 May 2014.
- "Radio 2 secures AFL rights". Radioinfo.com.au. 21 February 2003. Retrieved 11 May 2014.
- "World Audio deploys transmission network". Radioinfo.com.au. 6 November 2003. Retrieved 25 May 2014.
- "Bitter expat radio row for control of airwaves". The Age. Fairfax Media. 20 June 2003. Retrieved 9 July 2014.
- "More Big Names for Radio 2". Radioinfo.com.au. 21 April 2005. Retrieved 11 May 2014.
- "Radio 2 Launches across Australia". Radioinfo.com.au. 16 May 2005. Retrieved 11 May 2014.
- "Radio 2 - Australia's Digital Voice". 1 December 2005. Archived from the original on 1 December 2005. Retrieved 25 May 2014.
- "Radio 2 Frequencies". Radio 2. Archived from the original on 5 January 2006. Retrieved 25 May 2014.
- "Foxtel Tunes - Channels". Foxtel. Retrieved 25 May 2014.
- "Australian Radio Stations". thinkingaustralia.com.au. Retrieved 11 May 2014.
- "List of Stations by State - Vision Radio Network". Vision Radio Network. Retrieved 25 May 2014.
- "VISION 1611AM Sydney - Vision Radio Network". Vision Radio Network. Retrieved 25 May 2014.
- "Tune In". Niche Radio Network. Retrieved 25 May 2014.
- "Re: MF AM signal on 1629 KHz in Melbourne splattering on adjacent NAS frequencies". Google Groups. Retrieved 27 July 2014.