Rajars: Sir Terry bows out on top

Sir Terry Wogan bowed out of BBC Radio 2 on a high by equalling his best-ever audience figures, helping the Corporation increase its share of the radio market, according to audience listening figures.

Sir Terry Wogan
Sir Terry Wogan

Sir Terry, who presented his last show on 18 December, registered 8.1 million listeners a week in the last three months of 2009, up from 7.7 million in the previous quarter.

The veteran broadcaster, who has since been replaced by Chris Evans, extended his lead over Radio 1’s Chris Moyles, who increased his audience to 7.2 million in the quarter.

The BBC increased its share of the radio market to 55.2%, up from 55% in the third quarter and 55.7% in the same period in 2008.

The commercial radio sector saw listener numbers increase, up to 31.3 million from 31.2 million in the previous quarter. The sector also saw an increase in its share of ad-friendly 15-44 year-old listeners, up to 53.2% from 52.1% in the previous quarter.

Wogan’s Rajar swansong helped Radio 2 cement its position as the most listened to station in the UK, up 0.1% quarter on quarter to 13.4 million listeners. Radio 1 also saw its audience grow, registering 10.7 million listeners, up 1.8%.

Elsewhere, Absolute Radio, which launched in September 2008, registered 1.5 million listeners nationally, a 5.9% fall on the previous quarter. However, the station posted a 2.1% increase in total listening hours, “a strong indicator of listener satisfaction”, according to the station.

Absolute is preparing to launch a marketing campaign at the end of February featuring presenters Christian O’Connell, Frank Skinner and Dave Gorman.

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