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Digital Economy Act 2010

Topic 6: Independent radio services

Section 35: Radio multiplex services: frequency and licensed area

157.This section inserts section 54A into the Broadcasting Act 1996 (“the 1996 Act”). It allows OFCOM to vary a national radio multiplex licence by extending the area in which the licensed service is required to be available. It also allows OFCOM to vary the frequency, or extend or reduce the licensed area, of a local radio multiplex licence.

158.It is up to the holder of a licence to apply to OFCOM for approval of a variation. In so doing, the licence holder must submit a technical plan which indicates the proposed coverage area, the timetable and the technical means for implementing the change. OFCOM must consult on the proposal before granting the application. In the case of an application to vary a local radio multiplex licence, OFCOM may only grant approval if they consider that the variation will not unacceptably narrow the range of local DAB programmes in the area for which the local radio multiplex is provided.

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