Metro Radio is a local radio station owned and operated by Bauer Radio as part of the City 1 network. It broadcasts to County Durham, Northumberland and Tyne and Wear from studios in Newcastle. The station's output is shared with sister North East station TFM.
The Newcastle-based station, broadcasting to North East England, launched on 15 July 1974. The first Breakfast Show was presented by Don Dwyer, an Australian radio presenter formerly at ABC, Len Groat, Giles Squire, Dave Gregory, James Whale, Peter Wraight, Peter Sampson and Harry Rowell were additionally there from the beginning. The first show additionally included messages of congratulations from Kenny Everett at the equivalent local commercial station in London, Capital Radio.
The station transmitted from a studio in Swalwell, Gateshead, which, in later years, would be adjacent to the MetroCentre. In 2005 Metro, and sister station Magic 1152 moved to the former BT building, previously known as Swan House, now known as 55° North, next to the Tyne Bridge in Newcastle upon Tyne.
Until 2005 the station broadcast live football commentary for the region's two biggest clubs — Newcastle United and Sunderland. In an attempt to boost ratings, the football commentary was stopped. Notwithstanding a negative response from football fans prompted the owners to cover all Newcastle and Sunderland games on sister station Magic 1152.
As of Monday 8 April 2013, all Metro's programming is shared with TFM. Notwithstanding the Metro branding is retained along with separate advertising. The two stations were able to co-locate without consultation as the Metro Radio licence area is located in one approved broadcast area (North East England).
All programming on Metro Radio - local, networked and syndicated - is shared with TFM. The majority of the station's programming is produced from Newcastle, including networked shows for Friday nights and Saturday breakfast. Other networked programming originates from Key 103 in Manchester, Clyde 1 in Glasgow, Radio City in Liverpool, Radio Aire in Leeds and Forth 1 in Edinburgh. The Vodafone Big Top 40 is syndicated from Global Radio at its Capital studios in London for broadcast on over 145 commercial radio stations across the UK.
Metro Radio broadcasts local news bulletins hourly from 6am to 7pm on weekdays, from 7am to 1pm on Saturdays and Sundays. Headlines are broadcast on the half hour throughout weekday breakfast and drivetime shows, alongside sport and traffic bulletins.
Notable former presenters
The DJ and TV presenter James Whale launched his radio career on Metro, presenting the Nightowls show between 1974 and 1980. Other notable former presenters include:
Awards and nominations
Arqiva Commercial Radio Awards
|2011||RCS Programmer Of The Year||Chris Pegg (Programme Director)||Nominated|
|2011||Skillset Newcomer(s) Of The Year||Simon Conway (Journalist)||Nominated|
|2011||Newsteam Of The Year||Newsteam||Nominated|
|2012||Feature(s) of the Year||Raoul Moat: One Year On||Nominated|
|2012||RCS Programmer Of The Year||Chris Pegg (Programme Director)||Nominated|
|2013||Breakfast Show of the Year (under 2 Million TSA)||Steve & Karen's Breakfast Show||Gold|
|2013||Presenter of the Year (under 2 Million TSA)||Steve Furnell & Karen Wight||Gold|
|2013||RCS Programmer Of The Year||Chris Pegg (Programme Director)||Nominated|
|2013||Journalist of the Year (Ali Booker Memorial Award)||Rebecca Dixon||Nominated|
|2013||Station of the Year (500,000 to 2M TSA)||Metro Radio||Gold|
|2014||Presenter of the Year (under 2 Million TSA)||Steve Furnell & Karen Wight||Nominated|
|2014||Presenter of the Year (under 2 Million TSA)||Stuart Elmore & Kelly Hinch||Nominated|
|2014||RCS Programmer Of The Year||Chris Pegg (Programme Director)||Nominated|
|2014||Unsung Hero of the Year||Dan Black||Nominated|
|2014||Local Sales Team of The Year||Metro Radio & Magic 1152||Nominated|
|2015||Presenter of the Year (under 2 Million TSA)||Steve and Karen||Bronze|
|2015||Journalist of the Year||Micky Welch||Silver|
|2015||Station of the Year (under 2 Million TSA)||Metro Radio||Gold|
|2015||Marketing Award||Punching Above Weight Promo||Silver|
IRN News Awards
|2011||Young Journalist of the Year||Simon Conway||Nominated|
|2011||Newsreader of the Year||Joel Goldman||Nominated|
|2011||Best Newsteam / Newsroom||Newsteam||Nominated|
|2012||'And Finally'||The Princess and the Pea......Fritter||Runner-up|
|2013||Newsreader of the Year||Simon Conway||Runner-up|
|2013||Reporter of the Year||Rebecca Dixon||Nominated|
|2013||'And Finally'||Eat For Free||Runner-up|
|2014||Newsreader of the Year under 1M TSA||Sophie Calvert||Winner|
|2007||Best live event coverage||Alan Shearer Testimonial Coverage||Gold|
|2011||Best breaking news coverage||Manhunt - The Raoul Moat Story - Metro Radio News||Nominated|
|2011||Best live event coverage||Great North Run Coverage||Silver|
|2012||Speech Radio Personality of the Year||Alan Robson||Nominated|
|2012||News Journalist of the Year||Metro Radio News Team||Silver|
|2013||Best Speech Programme||Alan Robson's Nightowls||Bronze|
|2013||Breakfast Show of the Year (under 10 million)||Steve and Karen's Breakfast Show||Silver|
|2013||Station of the Year (1 Million plus)||Metro Radio||Gold|
|2014||Speech Radio Personality of the Year||Alan Robson||Silver|
|2014||Best Coverage of a Live Event||Great North Run 2013||Silver|
|2014||Station of the Year (1 Million plus)||Metro Radio||Nominated|