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BBC Hereford and Worcester is the BBC Local Radio service for the Englishcounties of Herefordshire and Worcestershire. It broadcasts from its studios in both Worcester and Hereford on 104 (Worcester), 104.4 (Redditch) 104.6 (Kidderminster) and 94.7 (Hereford) FM; as well as 738 (Worcester) and 1584 (North Herefordshire) MW on AM plus DAB. Although the short lived administrative County of Hereford and Worcester was abolished in 1996 and reverted to the traditional historic counties of Herefordshire and Worcestershire, the name of the station was not altered to reflect the change.
It serves the rural communities across Herefordshire as well as the more populous Worcestershire with a range of programmes from jazz, folk, country, funk and new music to daily local news, everyday discussion and outside broadcasts.
The station began broadcasting on 14 February 1989 (St Valentine's Day), and to mark the unusual, two-centre set-up for the radio station, the first record played was the song Two Hearts by Phil Collins. The original team of presenters included Graham Day (mid-morning), Gill Capewell (afternoons) and Allan Lee (drive). Other staff included Robert Piggott (now BBC Religious Affairs correspondent), TV journalist Liz MacKean and former LBC presenter Jeremy Dry.
When the station first began, Jane Garvey (of Radio Five Live) was one of the team of journalists. A few months later, she took over the Breakfast Show and went on to win a Sony Award with it.
BBC Hereford and Worcester still transmits on both AM and FM. The original, and two strongest FM transmitters are on 104 FM (Great Malvern, serving Worcestershire) and 94.7 FM (Ridge Hill, between Ross On Wye and Ledbury near Much Marcle, serving Herefordshire), These signals are not particularly powerful, and have limited coverage outside the two counties, unlike stations such as BBC WM. An additional FM transmitter on 104.6 has recently improved coverage in the Kidderminster area & in February 2006, a new transmitter was turned on for Redditch (Headless Cross) on 104.4FM, as reception in the town had been unreliable.
The main AM transmitter on 738 kHz is on the western edge of Worcester and covers most of the two counties. There is a small AM transmitter on 1584 kHz at Woofferton, just south of Ludlow on the A49. Although they have weaker FM signals compared to other BBC local radio transmitters, the 94.7FM signal can be heard clearly in the north of Bristol and even in Weston-super-Mare, as well as along the M4 from the Severn Bridge to Cardiff. The 738MW signal can also be heard in the north of Bristol. The station started broadcasting on DAB in 2013 with the new MuxCo Herefordshire and Worcestershire multiplex at the Bromsgrove, Ridge Hill and Malvern transmitter sites.
The station carries networked programming with counterpart BBC local radio stations in the Midlands during late evenings and at weekends. Most networked programming is simulcast with Radio Shropshire and Radio Stoke. Also the Mark Forrest show from BBC Radio Leeds which broadcasts on all BBC local stations.
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