Gaydio, the UK’s only radio station for gay, lesbian, bisexual and trans people has announced that it is part of a bid to launch nationwide on DAB Digital Radio. Last week bids closed for a second UK-wide DAB multiplex, known as Digital 2, which will carry 18 new stations.

The station is part of a bid by Listen2Digital, one of two consortia competing for the licence.

Station Director Toby Whitehouse says,

“We know that people already listen online from Penzance up to Inverness, so making the station accessible via their home and car radios is hugely exciting”

Gaydio started life as a pop-up station to support Manchester Pride in 2006 before launching full-time in 2010 on an FM licence for Manchester. In 2013 the station re-launched following the acquisition of DAB Digital Radio licences for London and the Sussex Coast that had previously been operated by Gaydar Radio. Since then, the station has trialled temporary broadcasts in Liverpool and Central Scotland in preparation for launching nationwide.

Gaydio has around 850,000 listeners per month, making it the world’s largest LGBT radio station.

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Ofcom is expected to announce the successful bid in Spring 2015, with the new service launching in the first half of 2016. Digital radio listenership is increasing in the UK, with new figures from RAJAR showing that 52% of the population now tune in to digital radio every week. Listen2Digital aims to reach 81.5% of the UK population with its new network. In the meantime, Gaydio is available across London and Sussex on DAB Digital Radio, on 88.4fm in Manchester and online or via the station’s mobile app everywhere else in the world. Details of the bid are available at listen2digital.co.uk and the station is asking listeners to support the bid by letting Ofcom know the importance of a nation-wide service for LGB&T people.