Four more projects from Coronavirus Support round

  • Four new projects totalling £51,000 have been announced
  • Includes new show for Alex Lester, who hosted on Radio 2 for nearly 30 years
  • Latest grants mean £134,000 now allocated in this round, for 11 projects

The Audio Content Fund has today announced the latest grants to be awarded in its special funding round to support audiences during Coronavirus restrictions.

The fund, which is financed by the UK Government, launched a special rolling round three weeks ago with a minimum grant budget of £200,000. This latest content brings to 11 the total number of projects funded, with £133,756 now allocated.

The projects include “All Together Now” a new nightly programme hosted live by Alex Lester on Greatest Hits Radio, and produced by Want Some Media.  Specifically targeting older listeners, the 2-hour show will aim to create a sense of old-fashioned community spirit, featuring feel-good stories, life hacks, and experts from medicine, fitness, psychology, and cookery. Lester, who left BBC Radio 2 in 2014 after nearly 30 years, joined Greatest Hits Radio earlier this year, and this will be his first live programme on the station.

A partnership of community and commercial stations in East Anglia will unite to broadcast a virtual edition of the county’s famous annual Strawberry Fair, celebrating music, poetry, drama and material for children and faith groups.  Meanwhile, children’s radio station Fun Kids will broadcast a series of sporting programmes hosted by former Blue Peter presenter Ayo Akinwolere and teen vlogger Chanel Kakareko, with guest stars from across the world of sport.

The final project approved this week will be made by over-70s, for over-70s, and broadcast on a partnership of community stations across England.  Prime Timers will be made by SWSW Network in partnership with AgeUK, and will be a weekly, 15-minute programme giving advice on what to do during self-isolation.  It will feature content on technology, health, keeping fit, book and film recommendations, and include messages from listeners around the UK.

All projects will be produced safely and in-line with government guidelines, and all will start broadcasting in the next two weeks. 

The special funding round remains open, operating on a rolling basis until the ACF determine it is no longer necessary.  Ideas will be reviewed by the funding panel within two weeks, with funding for selected ideas made available promptly and upfront.

All Together Now, with Alex Lester –
Want Some Media, for Greatest Hits Radio

Mon-Thu at 10pm-Midnight for 8 weeks, repeated at 4am two days later. National DAB station. TX from 14 April 2020.

A special nightly programme on Greatest Hits Radio reflecting the mood of the nation in these challenging times, targeted at slightly older audiences, and hosted live by Alex Lester. The aim of the programme is to create a sense of old-fashioned community spirit and to be a regular fixture for listeners during this period of uncertainty.  Featuring feel-good stories, life hacks, humorous stories, and experts from medicine, fitness, psychology, and cookery

Virtual Strawberry Fair – Folder & Co, for Cambridge 105, Star Radio, HCR FM, and Future Radio
11hr broadcast on June 6th, on a partnership of radio stations

A 12-hour “virtual festival” on June 6th 2020 to replace the annual Strawberry Fair, the free one-day arts and music event which attracts up to 50,000 people to East Anglia, and has been cancelled due to Coronavirus. From 12noon to 11pm, commercial and community stations across the county will broadcast music, poetry, drama and material for children and faith groups

Kids Play – TRCKSUITS, for Fun Kids
8x 10mins, four times a week for 8 weeks, starting 20 April

An entertaining, inspiring and educational sports show, hosted by former Blue Peter presenter Ayo Akinwolere and teenage YouTuber Chanel Kakareko. In each episode, Ayo and Chanel are joined by a sporting star, who gives advice on staying fit and healthy during the lockdown, from simple exercises to do at home to recipes for healthy smoothies. Our guests also reveal how they’re filling their time and staying in shape for big competitions ahead, once sport resumes

Prime Timers – SWSW Network, for Ujima Radio, All FM, Radio Verulam, Winchester Radio, Radio Tyneside, Soundart Radio and Unity 101
10x 15min programmes, broadcast weekly on Community Radio

Programmes for the over-70s, produced by the over-70s, and broadcast weekly on small stations across England.  Features will include Tech Savvy Seniors, health and well-being, book and film recommendations, and messages from older people around the UK