The documents below are reports and agreements officially submitted by GTFM to Ofcom under the terms of its Community Radio Licence.

They and published on this website, with the most recent report first, as part of  GTFM's public accountability commitments.

 

Section 1

1               Key commitments Annual Report Form

1.1             Community Radio Form: Year Ending 31 December 2013

Station details

 

Licence Number

CR000004

 

Station Name

GTFM

 

Launch Date

01/01/2006 (under a Community Radio Licence).

 

Web address where you will publish this report.

www.gtfm.co.uk

 

When will the report be published / available to view?

From (or before) 1st May 2014

 

 

1.2             The year in numbers

Please specify the station’s achievements in the year under review in numbers as follows: (some of this may be a repetition of the information supplied in the financial report)

Average number of live hours per week

(live material is created at the same time as it is broadcast)

97

Average number of original programming hours per week

(original material includes live plus pre-recorded material, but does not include repeats or automated output). [This figure cannot be less than the station’s live hours alone]

123

The percentage of your daytime output that is speech

35%

Total number of people trained during the year

20

Total number of volunteers involved during the year

52

Total number of volunteer hours per week

162

If appropriate, a list of languages you have broadcast in

English & Welsh

(There may be some repetition of this information in other sections such as programming.)

 

Please indicate whether your station key commitments have been delivered during the reporting period: 1 January to 31 December 2013

1.3             Key commitments: programming

Key commitment delivery

YES

NO

·          Live output will typically comprise 65% music and 35% speech of daytime weekday programming, (‘speech’ excludes advertising, programme/promotional trails and sponsor credits). Outside these hours, the proportion of speech content may be reduced.

YES

 

·          Music will consist in daytime of music from the 60s to the present day. A range of specialist music styles, including Welsh, rock, folk, blues, rock & roll, and country, will also be broadcast, mainly during evenings and at weekends. GTFM will also showcase local bands and Welsh language music.

YES

 

·          Speech content will typically comprise national, regional, local news and sport, interviews, community messages and community information slots, what’s on guide and phone-ins.

YES

 

·          Output will mainly be broadcast in English with some Welsh language content also being broadcast. (The use of other community languages is permitted.)

YES

 

·          The service will typically be broadcast live for at least 12 hours per day weekdays, 11 hours Saturdays and 8 hours on Sundays (live programming may include pre-recorded inserts, as applicable).

YES

 

·          The majority of station output will be produced at the main station studios or at University facilities. Some third-party programme material, such as news and features, may also be produced elsewhere.

YES

 

 

Explanatory notes re non-delivery (if applicable):

 

 

 

 

 

 

1.4             Key commitments: Social gain objectives

Key commitment delivery

YES

NO

(a) The provision of sound broadcasting services to individuals who are otherwise underserved

·          The service will be community-centred, reflecting and representing the community that it serves, including Welsh language content and discussion programming. No other radio service caters just for Pontypridd.

YES

 

(b) The facilitation of discussion and the expression of opinion

·          GTFM will offer air-time for local organisations to broadcast programming on issues of the day or about their organisation, and encourage listeners to engage and participate. A specific target is to ensure that at least five new groups become involved in such activities each year.

YES

 

·          Phone-ins and discussion programming will involve invited guests and/or panels of experts to generate debate on local issues, including local sport.

YES

 

(c) The provision (whether by means of programmes included in the service or otherwise) of education or training to individuals not employed by the person providing the service

·          GTFM has a training programme, parts of which are run in conjunction with the University of Glamorgan. Courses consist of a range of activities varying in complexity and formality. All volunteers complete an induction training course which provides participants with an overview of the station's philosophy and aims, together with some basic technical training. Other ad-hoc training of would-be presenters, contributors and behind the scenes volunteers occurs as needs dictate. Additionally the University of Glamorgan runs accredited and non-accredited courses in all aspects of radio production. These are designed to be appropriate to all levels of learning – from informal sessions on operating a mixing desk to accredited degree level modules in Radio Journalism and Radio Drama.

YES*

 

·          The station will promote and provide training opportunities to the wider community either via links with the University of Glamorgan or other local training agencies.

YES*

 

(d) The better understanding of the particular community and the strengthening of the links within it

·          GTFM undertakes to focus on regeneration and working within deprived communities. The station will be a link to other relevant community projects working in this area.

YES

 

·          GTFM will promote the station and the services it offers, such as hosting road shows and fundraising events for the community to participate in.

YES

 

·          In addition the station will provide a platform for other local organisations to promote local activities and events for the community to attend or take part in.

YES

 

 

Explanatory notes re non-delivery (if applicable):

·          GTFM now delivers its own in-house training of new volunteers, a consequence of the move of the Creative Industries campus of University named above (now known as the University of South Wales) to Cardiff. However, strong links with that University remain in the form of the twice a week Cardiff City Phone-in they produce for us, plus ad-hoc involvement with their students and lecturers (e.g. occasional work experience placements, talks to students by our Station Manager on the work of the station and station visits). The University of South Wales also facilitates meetings of Community Radio stations in Wales, to discuss shared problems and opportunities in which GTFM participates.

·          Additionally GTFM has strengthened its links with former local Colleges which linked up in Autumn 2013 to become the ‘College of the Valleys’. Vocational training is top of their agenda and they have invited GTFM to work closely with them, with progress expected by mid 2014.

·          GTFM still promotes opportunities for new volunteers on-air including mention of the fact   that training is given.

·          More volunteers apparently received training in 2012 because instruction had to be given in the operation of a new Myriad system and mixing desk.             

 

 

 

 

 

 

1.5             Key commitments: Access and participation

Key commitment delivery

YES

NO

GTFM will encourage and local community to be involved with the station as follows:

 

 

·          A programme of support and training is provided to facilitate involvement. Training includes induction, and then informal training in a variety of roles as well as other support for volunteers. Participation will be invited and promoted via broadcast commercials, the website and promotional literature. As a specific target, each week, the station expects to involve approximately 30 volunteers in its various activities, both on-air and off-air.

YES

See * above

 

·          Volunteers present and/or produce programmes (e.g. specialist music output), and work on administrative tasks such as research, the compilation of travel news bulletins and answering the phone.

YES

 

·          The station will develop its training for existing volunteer presenters. As a specific target, each year approximately ten volunteer presenters will undergo further training to help broaden and enhance their skills.

YES

See* above

 

·          Work experience and other training opportunities will be offered to local school children and older students, typically for a period of between one and two weeks at the station, depending upon age and interests. Students will follow a specially formulated induction. Target number of placements per year, 10-15.

YES

Average 1 per month

 

 

Explanatory notes re non-delivery (if applicable):

 

 

 

 

 

 

1.6             Key commitments: Accountability to the target community

Key commitment delivery

YES

NO

The group will actively encourage feedback by a number of methods:

 

 

·          Listener surveys will be carried out as often as is practicable. As a minimum, the station expects to carry out such a survey at least once per year.

YES

 

·          The station will actively encourage regular feedback from volunteers (formally and informally). Experienced volunteers will be co-opted onto the station's Management Committee to act as liaison between volunteer membership and station management. The station expects to have two such volunteer representatives on its Management Committee at any one time.

YES

 

·          The station's Management Committee undertakes to operate in a transparent manner and to actively encourage feedback and comments from members of the community. Members of the community may also become involved in the management of the station up to and including becoming a member of the station's Management Committee. (Formal elections to the committee will be held should the number of interested parties exceed places available.)

YES

 

·          Complaints which cannot be dealt with by a member of staff will be relayed to the Station Manager. He / she will take responsibility for reaching a satisfactory conclusion, involving the Management Committee should this be considered appropriate.

YES

 

·          Where a complaint is upheld, the station will publish details of the conclusions reached on its web-site and also, if appropriate, on air.

NONE

 

 

Explanatory notes re non-delivery (if applicable):

 

 

 

 

 

1.7             Volunteer inputs

Please provide details of the contribution made by volunteers to the station and its operation of the station, such as:

·          The approximate number of hours worked on average per volunteer per week.

·          Any other information to help Ofcom understand the input of volunteers to the station.

 

The ‘average’ GTFM volunteer will spend around five hours a week on their involvement with the station.

 

All of GTFM’s regular weekday and weekly programmes are presented by people working in a voluntary capacity. All but two of these people were volunteers during 2013, the others being employees whose paid working hours do not include programme presentation.

 

The overall programme strategy and deployment of different volunteer presenters on different days during 9am-4pm weekday timeband outlined in our 2012 report continued during 2013.

 

By the end of 2013 GTFM had 78 registered volunteers of whom 52 had played an active role during the year, with around 35 involved on an ‘average’ week.  

 

 

 

 

1.8             Significant achievements

 

Apart from managing to survive financially, without doubt GTFM’s biggest achievement during the year was finally having its popularity confirmed through independent research, paid for by the Welsh Government’s Communities First programme.

 

This resulted from the Station Manager taking up an offer of assistance because they were bringing their £45,000 pa grant to an end, along with their funding of all other outside organisations providing support services to them. We said we’d need independent audience research results to help us convince local companies, especially the larger ones, to advertise on the station in sufficient volume to generate enough sales revenue to compensate for the loss of a grant which previously contributed around 40% of total income for the year.

 

Meanwhile our Roadshow revenue and other sales/sponsorship income continued to grow, encouraged by the very healthy audience results summarised below.

 

 

 

1.9             Significant difficulties

Do you wish this section to be kept confidential?

YES

NO

 

No

 

Rising commercial advertising bookings and charity donations were not sufficient to plug the very large funding gap left by the ending of the Communities First Grant support in December 2012.

 

Serious cash flow difficulties resulted, compounded by a delay of three or four month in the start of the replacement ‘cluster’ organisations. This led to the sale of just one SLA to the Pontypridd Cluster for a six month period in August netting £500, in contrast to our forecasts which had assumed we’d receive around £10-15,000 in CF SLA involvement during this  year, leaving a shortfall of £40,000 instead of the expected lower figure.

 

Also, despite reassurance that Welsh Government advertising bookings would re-appear, only three such bookings were received in the whole of 2013. Before being accidentally stopped by the UK Government’s abolition of the COI in 2010, these bookings had been worth £15-20,000 per annum in additional revenue to GTFM.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1.10         Audience research

Please provide a summary of any audience research/ data you have collected during the year.

Radio Listening in the GTFM Area

Based on an Independent Survey by ‘Funding Eye’ 

April 2013

 

 

1. Weekly Adult Listeners (aged 15+)

 

This survey found GTFM to be the top listening choice of people in the CF37 postcode area which includes Pontypridd and sharing the ‘top’ spot with BBC Radio 1 in surrounding parts of Rhondda Cynon Taff County Borough.

When asked to name stations they’d listened to in the past 7 days for at least 15 minutes,

43%*of Pontypridd area radio listeners said ‘GTFM’;

26% Radio 1;

25% Real Radio; 23% Radio 2; 21% Capital FM; 14% Radio 4 and 10% Kiss,

with all other stations scoring less than 10%.

 

*Equivalent to an adult (15+)‘Weekly Reach’ of 41%.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Meanwhile across the part of GTFM’s wider RCT broadcast area surveyed (including Porth, Taffs Well, Llantrisant and Abercynon) the station reached 28%** of all radio listeners in a week, equal to Radio 1, but still ahead of all other radio stations: Real Radio and Radio 2 both had 22%, Capital FM 19%, Radio 4 17%; Kiss 10%; Radio Wales 9%; Heart 8% and Classic FM 6%, with Radio 5 Live, TalkSport, Nation Radio and Radio Cymru all having 4% each.

 

**Equivalent to an Adult (15+) weekly reach of 26.6%.

 

Because some people use radio on a less than weekly basis, it is also possible GTFM reaches up to 60% of the CF37 population in any month, and 40% of the larger area population.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Listener Numbers:

 

The 15+ population of the CF37 postcode area is 37,842, of whom 35,950 (95%) had listened to radio ‘during the last 7 days’. Of these 15,458 had listened to GTFM (that’s 43% of all radio listeners and 40.8% of the adult population).

 

The total 15+ population of the larger part of RCT surveyed (please note that GTFM’s full coverage area is larger than this) is 108,680, of whom 103,246 (95%) had listened to radio in the last 7 days. Of these 28,909 had listened to GTFM (that’s 28% of all radio listeners and 26.6% of the adult population, with an identical proportion of the population listening to BBC Radio 1)     

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2. ‘Favourite’ Station

 

GTFM also came out on top when listeners were asked which station they listened to the most. Once again it was the outright leader by a considerable margin in the Pontypridd area and shared the accolade with BBC Radio 1 in the larger RCT survey area, with Real Radio and BBC Radio 2 coming joint 2nd followed by Capital FM.

 

GTFM listeners most likely to say it’s their favourite station are aged 35 and over.

 

This is consistent with the priority GTFM gives to local information and news which is less likely to be interesting to younger people, to whom music is usually the main reason for listening to radio.

 

3. Audience Age Profile

 

While GTFM has listeners in all age groups, it attracts particularly large proportions of people aged 35+. This contrasts with the audience profiles of the areas two prominent commercial stations. For example, the survey found Capital FM’s most successful age group to be 15-24, while Real Radio’s biggest audience group is aged 25-34.      

 

This factor means GTFM provides an opportunity for advertisers to reach listeners not catered for by the commercial radio stations, giving access to local householders and other economically active people not available via any other radio outlet.               

 

 

4. Average Listening Hours

 

GTFM enjoys very long average listening hours when compared to industry averages.

 

This survey found that on weekdays the majority of GTFM listeners tuned-in for between 2 and 3 hours (per day), and a sizeable minority for 3 to 4 hours. Listening spans on weekend days tended to be a little shorter, averaging 1.5 hours per day per listener.

 

Over any week therefore, assuming a weekday average of 2.5 hours per day  (x 5) + 3 hours when Saturday and Sunday are combined, a typical listener will spend an impressive 15.5 hours tuned to the station.

 

5. High Awareness Conversion

 

Another indication of GTFM’s genuine popularity with listeners is the fact a very large proportion of people aware of the station have sampled it and gone on to become regular listeners to this day.

 

When Question 1 of the survey asked what stations respondents had ever heard of (not necessarily listened-to) 63% of respondents in Pontypridd said GTFM, with 53% going on to say they had listened to it at some point and 43% said they had listened during the past 7 days.

 

Meanwhile in the greater GTFM area, 52% knew the station name, 38% had listened at some point and 28% during the past 7 days.

 

In Pontypridd therefore, two thirds of the people who have heard of the station had actually listened to it the last 7 days. And in the wider part of RCT surveyed a little over half the people who know about the station are now regular listeners.

 

 

6. Survey Methodology

 

This ‘dipstick’ style survey consisted of 374 face-to-face interviews with adults (aged 15+) from the CF37 postcode area, plus adjoining RCT communities Llantrisant, Taffs Well, Porth and Abercynon.

 

The fieldwork was undertaken during February and March 2013 by Media students from Coleg Morgannwg and The University of South Wales. The survey was organised by Jon Matthews at ‘Funding Eye’ of Llandrindod Wells, who also extrapolated the results, applying weighting to exactly match the sample with Census 2011 age group profiles.

 

GTFM is grateful to the Wales Council for Voluntary Action acting on behalf of the Welsh Government’s Communities First regeneration programme for commissioning this study.  

 

 

 

 

Section 2

2               Declaration

I hereby declare that the information given in this annual report is, to the best of my knowledge and belief, true and correct.

Signature

Phil Rickards

Name

Phil Rickards

Position

Trustee 

Station

GTFM

Email address

c/o terry@gtfm.co.uk

Telephone number

01443 496111

Date

9th April 2014

 

 

 

 

 

Key commitments Annual Report Form

Community Radio Form: Year Ending 31 December 2012

 

CR004

 

GTFM

 

01/01/06

 

Web address where you will publish this report. [Please say if the report has already been published, and if not, when it will be]

Wed address: www.gtfm.co.uk. This report will be published via the 'Public File' link on our homepage on or by Monday 8th April 2013

 

The year in numbers

Average number of live hours per week

(live material is created at the same time as it is broadcast)

98.5

Average number of original programming hours per week

(original material includes pre-recorded and live material but does not include repeats or automated or voice tracked). 

109 + 15 hours of new, freshly voiced- tracked progs = 124* (see below)

The percentage of your daytime output that is speech

(at least) 35%

Total number of people trained during the year

29

Total number of volunteers involved during the year

54

Total volunteer hours per week

163

If appropriate, a list of languages you have broadcast in

English and Welsh

(There may be some repetition of this information in other sections such as programming.)

 

Key commitments: programming

  • Key commitment delivery
  • YES
  • NO
  • Live output will typically comprise 65% music and 35% speech of daytime weekday programming, (‘speech’ excludes advertising, programme/promotional trails and sponsor credits). Outside these hours, the proportion of speech content may be reduced.
  • Yes
  •  
  • Music will consist in daytime of music from the 60s to the present day. A range of specialist music styles, including Welsh, rock, folk, blues, rock & roll, and country, will also be broadcast, mainly during evenings and at weekends. GTFM will also showcase local bands and Welsh language music.
  • Yes
  •  
  • Speech content will typically comprise national, regional, local news and sport, interviews, community messages and community information slots, what’s on guide and phone-ins.
  • Yes
  •  
  • Output will mainly be broadcast in English with some Welsh language content also being broadcast. (The use of other community languages is permitted.)
  • Yes
  •  
  • The service will typically be broadcast live for at least 12 hours per day weekdays, 11 hours Saturdays and 8 hours on Sundays (live programming may include pre-recorded inserts, as applicable).
  • *see below
  •  
  • The majority of station output will be produced at the main station studios or at University facilities. Some third-party programme material, such as news and features, may also be produced elsewhere.
  • Yes
  •  

Explanatory notes:

*Although we have supplied an ‘original programming hours’ total according to Ofcom’s criteria which disregards voice-tracked output, in reality our freshly produced pre-recorded output each week consisted of a mixture of ‘real time’ as-live recordings and newly voice-tracked programmes. The listener heard these simply as new editions of regular shows so the difference in recording technique was not relevant. GTFM had only one x 1 hour ‘generic’ voice-tracked programme in 2012 (6-7am Sat) which we included in ‘Automated output’ (totalling only 36 hours per week, virtually all of which was broadcast overnight).

 

Fully live presentation averaged 98.5 hours per week during 2012. Individually: Mon 18hrs; Tue 16hrs (+2 hrs pre-rec @10pm); Wed 16hrs (+2 hours pre-rec @10pm); Thur 17hrs; Fri 16.5hrs (+ half an hour pre-rec all-speech sport @6.30pm).

 

Fully live output on Saturday averaged 10 hours (8am-6pm) out of a total of 18 hours of freshly prepared weekly programme covering the period 7am-1am (all of which were recorded earlier the same, 4 hours recorded in ‘real time’ and 4 hours newly voice-tracked).

 

Fully live output on Sunday averaged 5 hours per week (8am-1pm) out of a total of 17 hours of specifically prepared programming covering the period 6-7am + 8am-1am (with all of the 13 hour balance recorded earlier the same week, 2 hours ‘as live’ + 11 hours new VT).

The reason we have less ‘fully live’ output hours at weekends than on weekdays is lower volunteer presenter availability, which has always been the case. Since 2007 however, GTFM has dramatically increased the number of fully live weekday daytime presentation hours, to the point there was no routine voice tracking in 2012. And at weekends new programmes, freshly prepared each week, have completely replaced generic automation during all the pre-recorded hours quoted above.         

 

Key commitments: Social gain objectives

  • Key commitment delivery
  • YES
  • NO

(a) The provision of sound broadcasting services to individuals who are otherwise underserved

  • The service will be community-centred, reflecting and representing the community that it serves, including Welsh language content and discussion programming. No other radio service caters just for Pontypridd.
  • Yes
  •  

(b) The facilitation of discussion and the expression of opinion

  • GTFM will offer air-time for local organisations to broadcast programming on issues of the day or about their organisation, and encourage listeners to engage and participate. A specific target is to ensure that at least five new groups become involved in such activities each year.
  • Yes
  •  
  • Phone-ins and discussion programming will involve invited guests and/or panels of experts to generate debate on local issues, including local sport.
  • Yes
  •  

(c) The provision (whether by means of programmes included in the service or otherwise) of education or training to individuals not employed by the person providing the service

  • GTFM has a training programme, parts of which are run in conjunction with the University of Glamorgan. Courses consist of a range of activities varying in complexity and formality. All volunteers complete an induction training course which provides participants with an overview of the station's philosophy and aims, together with some basic technical training. Other ad-hoc training of would-be presenters, contributors and behind the scenes volunteers occurs as needs dictate. Additionally the University of Glamorgan runs accredited and non-accredited courses in all aspects of radio production. These are designed to be appropriate to all levels of learning – from informal sessions on operating a mixing desk to accredited degree level modules in Radio Journalism and Radio Drama.
  • Yes**
  •  
  • The station will promote and provide training opportunities to the wider community either via links with the University of Glamorgan or other local training agencies.
  • Yes
  •  

(d) The better understanding of the particular community and the strengthening of the links within it

  • GTFM undertakes to focus on regeneration and working within deprived communities. The station will be a link to other relevant community projects working in this area.
  • Yes
  •  
  • GTFM will promote the station and the services it offers, such as hosting road shows and fundraising events for the community to participate in.
  • Yes
  •  
  • In addition the station will provide a platform for other local organisations to promote local activities and events for the community to attend or take part in.
  • Yes
  •  

Explanatory notes:

** As explained in last years report, the nature of volunteer training provision at GTFM is evolving, a process originally prompted by the relocation to Cardiff of University of Glamorgan ‘creative industries’ activity in 2008. Although that University also co-operates with Radio Cardiff and their final representative left our Trustees board in early 2011, we still maintain a good working relationship, evidenced by the continuation of the twice weekly Cardiff City Phone-In during 2012, broadcast live from their Cardiff studios, plus continuing ad-hoc degree student work experience placements. During this reporting year we also developed stronger links with the University’s Welsh Learners department, which is based at their local Treforest campus.

 

Nevertheless, GTFM has largely had to develop its own internal needs-driven induction and re-training processes, while at the same time developing links with other local education establishments, as well as the County Borough Council with a view to gaining accreditation of our facilities and experienced trainers in their own right. (Provision of media training on a paid-for basis is identified in our Business Plan as a medium to long term goal).  

 

GTFM therefore undertook its own training of new volunteers during 2012, usually on a one-to-one basis, to the skill level required for the individual or task concerned at the time. We also re-trained the majority of existing presenters to operate new studio equipment. More detail of this training is outlined below. In the light of the above changes GTFM will consider approaching Ofcom to agree the re-wording of this Key Commitment to reflect the change of emphasis away from direct University of Glamorgan involvement in basic training.     

Key commitments: Access and participation

  • Key commitment delivery
  • YES
  • NO
  • GTFM will encourage and local community to be involved with the station as follows:
  • A programme of support and training is provided to facilitate involvement. Training includes induction, and then informal training in a variety of roles as well as other support for volunteers. Participation will be invited and promoted via broadcast commercials, the website and promotional literature. As a specific target, each week, the station expects to involve approximately 30 volunteers in its various activities, both on-air and off-air.
  • Yes
  •  
  • Volunteers present and/or produce programmes (e.g. specialist music output), and work on administrative tasks such as research, the compilation of travel news bulletins and answering the phone.
  • Yes
  •  
  • The station will develop its training for existing volunteer presenters. As a specific target, each year approximately ten volunteer presenters will undergo further training to help broaden and enhance their skills.
  • Yes**
  •  
  • Work experience and other training opportunities will be offered to local school children and older students, typically for a period of between one and two weeks at the station, depending upon age and interests. Students will follow a specially formulated induction. Target number of placements per year, 10-15.
  • Yes
  •  

Explanatory notes:

** We continued to adhere to this commitment during the reporting year, as explained above, with the supplementary training of existing volunteers dictated ‘on-demand’ by specific service or individual needs.   

 

Wide-ranging 2012 re-training examples, affecting almost all regular programming volunteers, included instruction on how to operate the Myriad 4 computer playout system which replaced our original Myriad 2 system in October and information about how to operate our replacement Studio 1 (live studio) audio mixer.         

 

 

Key commitments: Accountability to the target community

  • Key commitment delivery
  • YES
  • NO
  • The group will actively encourage feedback by a number of methods:
  • Listener surveys will be carried out as often as is practicable. As a minimum, the station expects to carry out such a survey at least once per year.
  • See below
  •  
  • The station will actively encourage regular feedback from volunteers (formally and informally). Experienced volunteers will be co-opted onto the station's Management Committee to act as liaison between volunteer membership and station management. The station expects to have two such volunteer representatives on its Management Committee at any one time.
  • Yes
  •  
  • The station's Management Committee undertakes to operate in a transparent manner and to actively encourage feedback and comments from members of the community. Members of the community may also become involved in the management of the station up to and including becoming a member of the station's Management Committee. (Formal elections to the committee will be held should the number of interested parties exceed places available.)
  • Yes
  •  
  • Complaints which cannot be dealt with by a member of staff will be relayed to the Station Manager. He / she will take responsibility for reaching a satisfactory conclusion, involving the Management Committee should this be considered appropriate.
  • Yes
  •  
  • Where a complaint is upheld, the station will publish details of the conclusions reached on its web-site and also, if appropriate, on air.
  •   n/a (none)
  •  

Explanatory notes re non-delivery (if applicable):  While GTFM remains pledged to carrying out research ‘as often as is practicable’, in reality it is not possible to organise a formal audience survey on any significant scale (i.e. to generate RAJAR compatible ‘weekly reach’ results) ‘at least once a year’, certainly not on our still limited financial resources. So we intend approaching Ofcom to seek a modification to this ‘key commitment’ sub-clause requirement.

 

Towards the end of 2012, however, we were able to commission our first extensive audience research project for several years, which has been ‘in the field’ during the first quarter of 2013. See ‘Audience Research’ below for more details.

 

 

 

Volunteer inputs (see guidance notes)

 

By the end of 2012 GTFM had 79 registered volunteers of whom 54 had played an active role during the year, with around 35 involved on an ‘average’ week.   

 

Throughout 2012 all main daytime programming and all but one hour of specialist evening programming per month were presented by volunteers, or in the case of weekday Breakfast a member of staff working in a voluntary capacity outside the scope of his ‘day job’ (Promotions Co-ordinator). The part-time Promotions Assistant also presented (on average) 3 programmes per week in a voluntary capacity. And the Station Manager contributed a monthly Business magazine programme and undertook holiday/sickness relief for absent volunteers and the (staff) Broadcast Journalist from time to time.

 

Volunteers therefore continued to be the ‘lifeblood’ of GTFM, playing key roles in virtually all areas of operation and assisting the handful of paid staff who generally regard their role as ‘enabling’ 

 

We also continued to enjoy keen interest from would-be volunteers, to the point not all of them could be processed by the end of the period. We’re resolved to clear the backlog, if possible, during 2013 and will prioritise potential volunteers who are enthusiastic about participating in outside promotional and fundraising activity and/or office administrative support. This is mainly because our own fundraising activities have to take greater priority as other forms of funding scale down due to budget cuts, making this area of our operation as important as studio based activities.      

 

Turning to our broadcasts, in order to give the largest possible number of volunteers a chance to present a regular programme (and to take account of their often limited availability), only the breakfast programme had the same presenter every weekday during the year, with the early evening Drivetime (4-7pm) show shared between an average of three regular presenters on different days. Meanwhile the weekday 10am-1pm and 1pm-4pm sequences usually had a different presenter each day of the week (although often the same person on the same day each week).

 

Continuity of style was assured despite this unusual amount of presenter variety through a uniform, playlisted daytime ‘format’ and ‘station style’ approach with regular informational items at particular hourly ‘clock’ times throughout.     

 

The approximate weekly number of hours worked by an ‘average’ volunteer was around five hours per head during this reporting year.

         

Three members of GTFM’s Management Committee remained volunteer programme contributors, with the Chairman presenting a weekly daytime programme (Monday 10am-1pm) and his Ponty Rugby (talk) Show on Friday evening at 6.30pm, in season.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Significant achievements

 

GTFM celebrated ten years of continuous broadcasting in May, having been the only Welsh representative in the Access Radio pilot study (2002-5) prior to becoming the first Welsh Community Radio Licence holder under Ofcom. On-air this celebration involved features about early programmes and people, with the theme widely publicised through our first wave of bus-back advertising between April and June, paid for through a South East Wales Business Development grant which also allowed us set up a dedicated ‘Promotions’ department (with one full-time and one part-time staff member) to market the station in the community and bring in fresh income by staging Roadshow style outside events. 

 

 

 

Throughout its life GTFM has facilitated local dialogue, encouraged community spirit, publicised regeneration and self-help initiatives, explained the changing face of Welsh Government and policies and offered free publicity to literally hundreds of charitable and not-for-profit organisations. Yet the process of listener discovery of the station went on throughout the year, evidenced by a steady stream of phone calls and other messages from people saying they’d found us on the dial and were now listening regularly.

 

Some of these new listeners said they used to listen to commercial local stations more than now because it was felt they had lost their ‘local’ flavour, or gone altogether in the case of Valleys Radio. BBC Radio Wales also lost at least one regular listener to us when its daytime schedule took another step away from a ‘magazine’ style toward journalism.           

 

Meanwhile GTFM continued to offer its ‘mainstream’ traditionally styled local radio service mix with ‘Live and Local’ the prevailing strategy and un-official motto.  

 

As a registered charity ourselves, we are always keen to assist other charities and happy to do so free of charge via programme interviews, local news bulletins, Community Message ‘free-ads’ and our What’s On service. So we are delighted to report that in 2012 two charities chose to supplement this free promotional activity with paid-for advertising and Roadshow bookings - and both have already told us they will do so again in 2013 on the basis of strong listener response. Firstly, local homeless housing charity Adref took out a one-month advertising campaign to highlight volunteering opportunities and a need for stock donations at their new charity shop in Mill Street, Pontypridd, then Macmillan Cancer Support took out two one-month advertising campaigns to encourage people to take part in their Rhondda (June) and Llantrisant (Sept) sponsored walks, both of which attracted above-expectation numbers. GTFM also mounted start/finish line Roadshows which proved very popular. 

      

 

 

The continued public support of both the Mayors of Pontypridd town and RCT County Borough was also very valuable in helping us open yet more ‘new doors’.

 

And in November we received most of the donation pledged to us by RCT’s 2011-12 Mayor from her charity appeal. Eventually totalling a little over £8,000, this sum is equivalent to the cost of installing an underground mains power supply to our transmitter site (active from February 2013), which in turn will save us significant sums on diesel fuel and generator hire in future years, not to mention freeing-up valuable staff time previously devoted to re-fuelling trips ‘up the mountain’ in all weathers.

 

It is a tribute to our volunteers and core staff that not only did we survive the recession but managed to do so without any ‘audible’ reductions in either our broadcasting hours, the diversity of our programme schedule or our local news service.  

 

Nevertheless, strenuous efforts continued ‘behind the scenes’ throughout 2012 to further strengthen GTFM’s finances, which were seriously damaged by the effects of the recent recession. We also had to take into account the need to shift away from the great dependence on grant funding typical of our earlier years to more reliance on self-generated income, made essential by cuts in public spending. In common with many other social enterprises and charities however, GTFM is happy to embrace this challenge, which in turn has forced us to re-evaluate the effectiveness and potential of all aspects of our operation.          

 

In terms of ‘commercial’ income, with the continued support of local councillors and Pontypridd’s Member of Parliament, the Strategy & Public Relations arm of Rhondda Cynon-Taff County Borough Council increased their advertising spend with us. The Council also committed to a second six month sponsorship of the weekday Breakfast Show on behalf of their Pontypridd Town Centre Regeneration project, their Foster Care Team took out another one year low-rotation campaign and their Events department sponsored the Saturday afternoon ‘Season Ticket’ sport & music programme.

 

Significantly too, RCT Council also booked our newly re-furbished ‘Roadshow’ for all eight of its pre Christmas events in different town centres. Indeed, during its first year in operation our new (business grant supported) Promotions department brought in Roadshow bookings totalling £11,374, compared to less than £2,000 such revenue in 2011, prior to the creation of the specific department. This was an encouraging first step towards the departmental target of supporting itself and generating additional revenue for the station within the three year (tapered) grant support period.    

 

After extensive station lobbying (reported last year), plus the support of Pontypridd’s Assembly Member, the advertising Agency responsible for Welsh Government bookings placed an advert highlighting WG’s Domestic Violence Helpline just before the end of the year, to run during the Six Nations Rugby tournament in February and March 2013. This was the first such booking to be received since the 2010 abolition by the UK Government of the COI and (we hope) an indication of the return of Welsh Government advertising, though no more has been forthcoming up to the time of writing this report. 

 

Other advertising and sponsorship revenue opportunities were pursued successfully by the Station Manager in 2012, including launch advertising, Breakfast sponsorship and two Roadshows for the new Pontypridd Sainsbury’s store (in July), plus three month’s (September–December) sponsorship of GTFM’s rush-hour traffic and travel reports by the area’s biggest motor dealer, Griffin Mill Garages. Because this new advertising activity was mainly gained in the second half of 2012, which began very ‘quietly’ in terms of advertising bookings, the full effect does not show in the figures, but is set to continue in 2013.

 

Griffin Mill Garages also contributed £1,000 towards our second bus-back advertising campaign in September & October, which allowed us to book adverts onto 25 instead of the planned 15 vehicles.

 

 

Last, but not least, we were very grateful to Ofcom for an award from their Community Radio Fund to supplement a key staff salary affected by the ending, in its present form, of Communities First funding from the Welsh Government. Although we may be able to re-gain some Communities First support by directly ‘selling’ services to new local ‘cluster’ organisations being set up in Spring 2013, Ofcom understood that a significant funding gap was unavoidable. 

 

 

Significant difficulties

Do you wish this section to be kept confidential? No.

Despite the general improvement in trading conditions noted above, during the first part of 2012 GTFM continued to suffer the knock-on effects of cash-flow difficulties carried forward from the previous couple of years. This made us late paying some important annual bills and led to a tricky period of negotiation with HMRC which insisted for a (long) while that we owed them a lot more money than was in fact the case, apparently because of tax owing on behalf of ‘ghost’ employees who only existed in their computer system, at a time we actually had just one PAYE employee. This problem was eventually sorted out following the helpful intervention of local MP, Owen Smith, aided further by an advanced advertising booking fee from RCT CBC, but not before stress levels had been raised considerably.  

 

 

Audience research

Please provide a summary of any audience research/ data you have collected during the year.

As outlined above, GTFM intends approaching Ofcom to seek a modification to a ‘key commitment’ sub-clause requiring audience research to be carried out on at least an annual basis because, in reality, this has not proved possible – certainly not on the sort of scale and quality which would yield meaningful (Rajar comparable) results.  

 

However, during the last quarter of this 2012 reporting year we did manage to secure funding for two complimentary audience survey projects, fieldwork for which has been taking place in the first quarter of 2013, so results will be reported in next year’s KC report.

 

Therefore, in December 2012, questionnaires were prepared for both an ‘on-line’ survey of GTFM listener attitudes to be accessed from the station’s website and a full-scale ‘in the street’ survey of all radio listening in the local area, involving up to 500 respondents. This survey specifically includes a question asking respondents to name all the radio stations they have listened-to for at least 15 minutes during the preceding 7 days, in order to generate ‘Weekly Reach’ statistics broadly comparable with those of RAJAR (industry standard) surveys. It is hoped these results will be particularly useful in selling advertising and sponsorship to large scale local companies who routinely ask for such data.

  

Meanwhile the ‘on-line’ survey will seek ‘qualitative’ information from existing listeners about their attitudes to important aspects of the existing service, to help shape future strategy. 

 

Both surveys are being carried out independently for GTFM by Cambrian Research and paid for by the Welsh Government via a WCVA administered fund designed to help organisations losing central Communities First funding support improve their prospects of attracting alternative revenue. Results are expected shortly after Easter 2013.

 

Meanwhile GTFM has continued to monitor listener response to participation events and competitions (which continued to grow during the year). We also enjoyed steady growth in response and interaction via our social media outlets. To this end the station launched a third Twitter account (GTFM Sport) to work alongside ‘GTFM NEWS’ and our ‘general’ account. Our main Twitter and Facebook accounts are accessed from links on our website homepage, whereas our News and Sport Twitter accounts are accessed via our ‘newsroom’ webpage, where the most recent posts are always displayed in automatically updated windows.

 

By the end of 2012 GTFM had gained 582 Facebook followers, with 690 people following it via its general Twitter account, 710 (including the First Minister) via GTFM NEWS and 104 via GTFM SPORT (which was only introduced in the Autumn).                     

 

Towards the end of the year we also commissioned a local ‘hi tech’ firm to create a new website which as well as looking more modern will also allow more GTFM personnel to upload information and features (up to now only the Station Manager has had editing access). The new website is expected to come on-line by May 2013 and will also feature more opportunities for listener feedback and advertiser involvement.    

 

 

Section 2

Declaration

I hereby declare that the information given in this annual report is, to the best of my knowledge and belief, true and correct.

Alun Jones  

 

 

Alun Jones

 

 

Chairman of Trustees

 

 

GTFM (South Wales) Ltd

 

 

pontyalunjones@talktalk.net    (but please send any detailed queries in the first instance to:

Terry Mann, Station Manager via: terry@gtfm.co.uk )           

 

 

(Station) 01443 406111. 

 

 

29th March 2013

 


 

 

Community Radio Annual Report Form: Year Ending 31 December 2011

CR004

GTFM

 

OUR FIRST OFCOM LICENCE COMMENCED ON 01/01/06, THOUGH THE STATION BEGAN FULL TIME BROADCASTING ON 28TH MAY 2002 AS PART OF THE RADIO AUTHORITY ACCESS RADIO PILOT STUDY.

www.gtfm.co.uk

 

The year in numbers

Average number of live hours per week

 

99.75 (varied between 103 and  96.5 at different points)

Average number of original programming hours per week (this may include pre-recorded and live material but should not include repeats). 

123

The percentage of your live daytime output that is speech

 

(at least) 35%

Number of people trained during the year

 

7

Number of volunteers involved during the year

 

50

Total volunteer hours per week  

 

145 (average)

If appropriate, a list of languages you have broadcast in

 

English & Welsh

(There may be some repetition of this information in other sections such as programming.)

Key commitments: programming

  • Key commitment delivery
  • YES
  • NO
  • Live output will typically comprise 65% music and 35% speech of daytime weekday programming, (‘speech’ excludes advertising, programme/promotional trails and sponsor credits). Outside these hours, the proportion of speech content may be reduced.
  • Yes
  •  
  • Music will consist in daytime of music from the 60s to the present day. A range of specialist music styles, including Welsh, rock, folk, blues, rock & roll, and country, will also be broadcast, mainly during evenings and at weekends. GTFM will also showcase local bands and Welsh language music.
  • Yes
  •  
  • Speech content will typically comprise national, regional, local news and sport, interviews, community messages and community information slots, what’s on guide and phone-ins.
  • Yes
  •  
  • Output will mainly be broadcast in English with some Welsh language content also being broadcast. (The use of other community languages is permitted.)
  • Yes
  •  
  • The service will typically be broadcast live for at least 12 hours per day weekdays, 11 hours Saturdays and 8 hours on Sundays (live programming may include prerecorded inserts, as applicable).
  • See below
  •  
  • The majority of station output will be produced at the main station studios or at University facilities. Some third-party programme material, such as news and features, may also be produced elsewhere.
  • Yes
  •  

Explanatory notes: Fully live presentation (the presenter was actually in the studio at the time of broadcast) took place on an average weekday for (at least) 16.3 hours  during 2011.

 

Fully live output on Saturday averaged 10 hour hours (8am-6pm) out of a total of 16 hours of specifically prepared programming covering the period 7am-11pm (of which at least 4 of the pre-produced hours were recorded ‘as live’ earlier the same week).

 

Fully live output on Sunday averaged 5 hours per week (8am-1pm) out of a total of 17 hours of specifically prepared programming covering the period 8am-1am (with all of the 12 hour balance recorded ‘as live’ earlier the same week).

 

The more restricted ‘live’ output at weekends is largely caused by lower volunteer presenter availability and has been the case since the start of full time broadcasts in 2002. Since 2007 however, GTFM has dramatically increased its number of fully live presentation hours, especially on weekdays, to the point there was no voicetracking at all in 2011. And at weekends new programmes, freshly prepared each week have replaced generic automation during all the pre-recorded hours quoted above.                    

 

 

 

 

 

Key commitments: Social gain objectives

  • Key commitment delivery
  • YES
  • NO

(a) The provision of sound broadcasting services to individuals who are otherwise underserved

  • The service will be community-centred, reflecting and representing the community that it serves, including Welsh language content and discussion programming. No other radio service caters just for Pontypridd.
  • Yes
  •  

(b) The facilitation of discussion and the expression of opinion

  • GTFM will offer air-time for local organisations to broadcast programming on issues of the day or about their organisation, and encourage listeners to engage and participate. A specific target is to ensure that at least five new groups become involved in such activities each year.
  • Yes
  •  
  • Phone-ins and discussion programming will involve invited guests and/or panels of experts to generate debate on local issues, including local sport.
  • Yes
  •  

(c) The provision (whether by means of programmes included in the service or otherwise) of education or training to individuals not employed by the person providing the service

  • GTFM has a training programme, parts of which are run in conjunction with the University of Glamorgan. Courses consist of a range of activities varying in complexity and formality. All volunteers complete an induction training course which provides participants with an overview of the station's philosophy and aims, together with some basic technical training. Other ad-hoc training of would-be presenters, contributors and behind the scenes volunteers occurs as needs dictate. Additionally the University of Glamorgan runs accredited and non-accredited courses in all aspects of radio production. These are designed to be appropriate to all levels of learning – from informal sessions on operating a mixing desk to accredited degree level modules in Radio Journalism and Radio Drama.
  • Yes
  •  
  • The station will promote and provide training opportunities to the wider community either via links with the University of Glamorgan or other local training agencies.
  • Yes
  •  

(d) The better understanding of the particular community and the strengthening of the links within it

  • GTFM undertakes to focus on regeneration and working within deprived communities. The station will be a link to other relevant community projects working in this area.
  • Yes
  •  
  • GTFM will promote the station and the services it offers, such as hosting road shows and fundraising events for the community to participate in.
  • Yes
  •  
  • In addition the station will provide a platform for other local organisations to promote local activities and events for the community to attend or take part in.
  • Yes
  •  

Explanatory notes: The nature of volunteer training provision has changed because  the University of Glamorgan has concentrated all its ‘creative industries’ activity in Cardiff since 2008. It has also opened links with Radio Cardiff and its final representative left GTFM’s Board of Trustees in early 2011. Nevertheless, a good working relationship remained through which ad-hoc training and student work experience placements took place, our Station Manager was invited to appear as a guest lecturer and up to two editions of the Cardiff City Phone-in were produced at the University and broadcast live via IP link each week during the football season.

 

GTFM undertook its own training of 7 new volunteers ‘in-house’ during 2011, activity often undertaken on a one-to-one basis, to whatever skill level was required for the individual concerned. One unusual example was a local girl in her early 20’s who was running a shop in Surrey after going to university there and took a holiday to come  home to ask us if she had any capacity for radio journalism, something she’d wanted to try for some time but had no actual experience. During a five day crash course with GTFM’s Station Manager, who was manning the newsroom at the time, she became capable of compiling, recording and editing her own local news bulletins (under supervision). Having confirmed her flair for the medium she then quit her job and accepted our offer of a spell of voluntary co-presentation of the Breakfast Show during the summer, during which she presented local news live. Not long after that she was offered a place on the much sought-after post-graduate School of Journalism course at Cardiff University and is still there.

 

GTFM also took its first steps toward becoming an accredited media trainer in its own right by holding exploratory discussions with an educational representative from Rhondda Cynon Taf County Borough Council about required course content for various qualifications and the formal accreditation process, the results of which were very encouraging.

 

Key commitments: Access and participation

  • Key commitment delivery
  • YES
  • NO
  • GTFM will encourage and local community to be involved with the station as follows:
  • A programme of support and training is provided to facilitate involvement. Training includes induction, and then informal training in a variety of roles as well as other support for volunteers. Participation will be invited and promoted via broadcast commercials, the website and promotional literature. As a specific target, each week, the station expects to involve approximately 30 volunteers in its various activities, both on-air and off-air.
  • Yes
  •  
  • Volunteers present and/or produce programmes (e.g. specialist music output), and work on administrative tasks such as research, the compilation of travel news bulletins and answering the phone.
  • Yes
  •  
  • The station will develop its training for existing volunteer presenters. As a specific target, each year approximately ten volunteer presenters will undergo further training to help broaden and enhance their skills.
  • Yes
  •  
  • Work experience and other training opportunities will be offered to local school children and older students, typically for a period of between one and two weeks at the station, depending upon age and interests. Students will follow a specially formulated induction. Target number of placements per year, 10-15.
  • Yes
  •  

 

Explanatory notes:  New volunteer recruitment was promoted on-air during 2011 through live presenter scripted and ad-lib announcements, not (pre-recorded) ‘broadcast commercials’. As the vast majority of programmes are presented live by volunteers, it was felt the personal ‘why not come and join us’ approach is better than more formal announcements. Promotion of volunteering via the website and in the very limted amount of printed material produced in 2011 also continued.

 

 

Key commitments: Accountability to the target community

  • Key commitment delivery
  • YES
  • NO
  • The group will actively encourage feedback by a number of methods:
  • Listener surveys will be carried out as often as is practicable. As a minimum, the station expects to carry out such a survey at least once per year.
  • See below
  •  
  • The station will actively encourage regular feedback from volunteers (formally and informally). Experienced volunteers will be co-opted onto the station's Management Committee to act as liaison between volunteer membership and station management. The station expects to have two such volunteer representatives on its Management Committee at any one time.
  •  Yes
  •  
  • The station's Management Committee undertakes to operate in a transparent manner and to actively encourage feedback and comments from members of the community. Members of the community may also become involved in the management of the station up to and including becoming a member of the station's Management Committee. (Formal elections to the committee will be held should the number of interested parties exceed places available.)
  •  Yes
  •  
  • Complaints which cannot be dealt with by a member of staff will be relayed to the Station Manager. He / she will take responsibility for reaching a satisfactory conclusion, involving the Management Committee should this be considered appropriate.
  •  Yes
  • (none)
  •  
  • Where a complaint is upheld, the station will publish details of the conclusions reached on its web-site and also, if appropriate, on air.
  •   n/a
  •  

 

Explanatory notes re non-delivery (if applicable): Lack of available funds and management time (due to short shortages) once again prevented GTFM from conducting formal audience research in 2011. But news at the end of the year of a Business Development grant means this should be possible in 2012 or 2013. This new funding will also allow a great deal more ‘roadshow’ activity, another very useful way of meeting with the community at large and gaining feedback.

 

During 2011 station management continued to take careful note of audience reaction  in a variety of other ways, including GTFM’s social media outlets. Having established a Facebook presence and a ‘GTFMNews’ Twitter account which is automatically reproduced in a window on its website newsroom page, in 2010, in February 2011 GTFM opened a ‘station’ Twitter account and began using it to carry up to date local and programme information including travel news ‘flashes’ (etc).  

See ‘audience research’ below for more social media and other feedback information.

 

 

 

Volunteer inputs (see guidance notes)

 

By the end of 2011 GTFM had 77 registered volunteers of whom 50 had played an active role during the year, with up to 40 involved on an ‘average’ week.  Interest in volunteering remained healthy with 42 new enquiries received during the year, though only a relatively small proportion (4 people) decided subsequently to take their enquiry further.   

 

As well as presenting all programmes except the monthly ‘Valleys Business’ hour (Station Manager), Gtfm evening and weekend ‘specialisist’ interest show presenters also entirely produced their programmes. Presenters during Monday-Satuday daytime contributed additional content around a staff (Station Manager) scheduled playlist, together with local information ‘scripts’ placed in the studio ‘read book’, which is updated by volunteers under the guidance of the (staff) Admin/Finance Manager.  Since the staff Programme Co-ordinator/breakfast presenter left in summer 2010 the replacement volunteer presenter has continued to carry out many of the routine tasks of this role, the responsibilities of which are shared with the Station Manager. Volunteers are encouraged to contribute suggestions for GTFM’s playlist, which are often adopted.

 

With the exception of breakfast, weekday daytime programmes were normally presented by different volunteers on different days, giving opportunities to far more people than the traditional Mon-Fri ‘same presenter’ model. Presenters were allocated a regular day where possible, with continuity of station sound maintained through a consistent music and information spot schedule.

 

Since the staff Volunteer Co-ordinator left in Jan 2011 and was not replaced due to lack of funding, the volunteer breakfast presenter has also worked in collaboration with the Admin/Finance Manager to organise volunteer effort on a day-to-day basis.

 

He is one of a core half-dozen volunteers who provide regular support, including short-notice programme cover - whereas the contribution of the majority of others is normally confined to their specific programmes, often on a weekly or monthly basis. Therefore the approximate weekly number of hours worked by an ‘average’ volunteer remained around 6 hours during this reporting year.

         

Three members of GTFM’s Management Committee remained volunteer programme contributors, with the Chairman presenting a weekly daytime strip and his Ponty Rugby (talk) Show on Friday evening at 6.30pm in season.   

 

Towards the end of the year in particular, several volunteer organised and executed  Roadshows helped establish valuable foundations on which this activity can be greatly expanded in 2012 as a result of grant funding, which will allow GTFM to develop outside event staging as an additional station revenue source.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Significant achievements

 

Whereas just managing to stay in business was the top achievement last year, in 2011 GTFM made several significant steps not only on the road to recovery, but toward the more secure future outlined in its submission to Ofcom for a second licence term, which has now begun.

 

With the help of local councillors the station managed to re-engage with the Strategy & Public Relations arm of Rhondda Cynon-Taf County Borough Council, leading to renewed advertising bookings, the first of which was a six-month sponsorship of the weekday Breakfast Show on behalf of their £10.5m Pontypridd Town Centre Regeneration project, under the slogan ‘Wake up to a Changing Pontypridd’. Their Foster Care Team also took out a one year low-level advertsing campaign, using a commercial made by Real Radio. Other advertising bookings supplemented Roadshow engagements towards the end of the year with the assurance they will continue in 2012, albeit on an ad-hoc rather than SLA basis. Nevertheless this is a significant development.

 

The sudden loss of Welsh Government advertising in 2010 (plus UK Government agency bookings like the Electoral Commission and Environment Agency) which GTFM had previously received alongside Welsh commercial stations, appears to be the result of UK Government abolition, or near abolition, of the COI - which we learned in 2011 acted as an intermediary organisation placing government bookings with advertising agencies. Having been assured it was not a deliberate ‘decision’ taken by the Welsh Government, we are hopeful of a resumption in bookings at some point in 2012.

 

Other advertising revenue opportunities began to grow towards the end of the year too, with a noticeable increase in enquiries following long term on-air advertising of the station’s ‘affordable’ advertising rates. In 2012 the arrival of the first Sainsbury’s store in the Valleys area, in Pontypridd, is also expected to boost local business confidence, from which GTFM hopes to benefit, either directly or indirectly.    

 

Achieving the public support of both the mayors of Pontypridd and RCT County Borough who named GTFM as a charity beneficiary of their 2011-12 appeals has been very useful in opening other ‘doors’, especially in County Council HQ – and the year ended with the news we had been successful in winning a £25k grant to replace essential equipment, much of which was second-hand when GTFM started full-time broadcasting a decade ago – and a £90k over three years Business Development grant.

 

This funding will pay for the external advertising of the station to increase awareness with non-listeners and potential advertisers alike, as well as funding 1.5 new staff posts who will concentrate on Roadshow and promotional activity and develop it as an income stream, equipped with new promotional signage and outside event facilities to a ‘professional’ standard. We are also hopeful sufficient surplus will remain from this funding to mount an audience research study or two during the three year period.      

 

 

 

 

 

Significant difficulties

Do you wish this section to be kept confidential? No

GTFM’s revenue income figures for the year illustrate a continued cash shortage which led to cash-flow difficulties and kept staff numbers and expenditure at ‘survival’ level thoughout the year. (Partly) paid staff numbered just two for the first quarter, becoming three when funding resumed for the Broadcast Journalist post, allowing the recruitment of a news person who started in April. Up to that point (since July 2010) the Station Manager had looked after local news bulletin production and generally concentrate on sustaining day-to-day operations, including responsibility for studio equipment repairs and transmission, though he was able to resume some of his longer term planning and ‘overview’ tasks from April onwards after giving basic training to the incoming staff journalist.

 

Similarly, the Admin/Finance Manager retained the responsibility for organisation and recruitment of volunteers she adopted when the staff Volunteer Co-ordinator went on long-term sick leave in Summer 2010 before leaving in January 2011. This key post  cannot be filled until new funding is found.

 

As mentioned in previous reports, an almost total absence of RCT County Borough advertising revenue (by comparison with pre 2009 SLA income of around £40k pa) and a total lack of Welsh Government and UK Government agency advertsising (which, prior to 2010, was worth around £20-25k pa) remained the main reason income was down £50-60k compared to a typical pre-recession year - and strenuous efforts were made in 2011 to correct this situation and discover additional funding streams (as described in ‘achievements’ above).

 

In addition to the funding difficulties already outlined, in common with many other charities and social enterprises, GTFM experienced great difficulty in attracting continuation funding, with the noteable exception of the Welsh Government Community Radio Fund and through their Communities First scheme. For example, organisations like the Big Lottery (to whom GTFM made an unsuccessful application in 2011) seem to prefer brand new projects to existing ones, no matter how ‘worthy’ they may be considered.

 

Audience research

Please provide a summary of any audience research/ data you have collected during the year.

 

Social Media

 

While it would be true to say Facebook was initially GTFM’s most prominent social media platform, by the end of 2011 it was apparent the station’s Twitter following was growing at a faster rate, with at least a couple of new ‘followers’ joining each day.

 

The station’s growing Twitter users profile is also noteable for the proportion of prominient individuals (for example MP’s and National Assembly members) choosing to follow the station, whereas Facebook remained the medium of choice for many local listeners.

 

 

By the end of the year we estimate our Facebook group member numbers to be 541, with approximately 290 users saying they ‘like’ our (newer) station page, whereas around 275 Twitter users chose to ‘follow’ the station’s general account, with 400 following the (older) GTFM NEWS page.

 

(These statistics were estimated from actual numbers recorded in March 2012 though subtraction on the basis of recently noted growth trends. We now record and revise these statistics regularly).

 

Other Public Feedback

 

As reported above and in previous years we take careful note of all kinds of listener feedback and suggestions, whether communicated to us via text, email, phone, social media or in person.

 

In particular the post recession re-emergence of our outside event/Roadshow activity from summer 2011 onwards has put us in direct contact with thousands of listeners and potential listeners. And, for the first time, a significant number of these outside event ‘bookings’ have come from nearby localities, especially in the Rhonnda Valley, which have enjoyed better reception of GTFM since our frequency/transmitter location changes in 2007 and now seem very keen to ‘adopt’ the station.

 

For example, an initial booking to provide a Roadshow at the summer Porth Carnival led to bookings for the Christmas Lights events at Porth and nearby Tonypandy. In turn, our successful appearances at these events were noted by the County Council, which booked us for a similar event in Llantrisant. Meanwhile we continued to expand the ‘Christmas Lights Switch-On’ event and outside broadcast we stage in Pontypridd on behalf of the Town Council in November every year. Attendance in 2011 was estimated by Police at 10,000, the biggest yet and we have already been re-booked for 2012 on the basis of this success. Also, the County Council want us to stage a roadshow in Pontypridd to celebrate the arrival of the Olympic flame in May 2012.

 

To date all of these events have been attended by station management in the form of either the Admin/Finanace Manager, Station Manager, or both, in addition to up to half a dozen key volunteers who actually perform the shows. All engage in conversation with a great many members of the public, gaining valuable feedback.                           

 

 

Section 2

Declaration

I hereby declare that the information given in this annual report is, to the best of my knowledge and belief, true and correct.

Signature

(Alun Jones – a scan of his signature on our printed version is attached to this email version)

 

 

Name

Alun Jones

 

 

Position

Chairman of Trustees

 

 

Station

GTFM (South Wales) Ltd

 

 

Email address

c/o  terry@gtfm.co.uk

 

 

Telephone number

01443 406111

 

 

Date

30th March 2012

 

 


1.1             Community Radio Annual Report Form: Year Ending 31 March 2011

Station details

 

Licence Number

CR004

 

Station Name

GTFM

 

Launch Date

Under Ofcom Community Radio licence: 1st January 2006

Prior to this: 29th April 2002 as part of the Radio Authority Access Radio Pilot Study

 

Web address where you will publish this report

www.gtfm.co.uk  This report was published on Gtfm’s website on 15th July 2011

 

 

 

PLEASE NOTE:  Each section can be expanded to take as much information as you need to provide. 

 


1.2             The year in numbers

Please specify the station’s achievements in the 10/11 year in numbers as follows:

Average number of live hours per week

 

103

Average number of original programming hours per week

(this may include pre-recorded as well as live material but should not include repeats). 

 

123 including all live output and programmes new editions of which are pre-recorded ‘as live’ every week. ‘Generic’ automated output (i.e. overnight) not included.  

The percentage of your live daytime output that is speech

 

At least 35%, averaged over daytime hours on a typical week.

Number of people trained over the course of the year

 

18

Number of volunteers involved over the course of the year

 

80 (embracing involvement at all levels). Over a typical week at least 35 volunteers are involved.     

If appropriate, a list of languages you have broadcast in

 

We broadcast in two languages: English and Welsh. While the majority of hours are in English, there are at least five hours of dedicated Welsh programming per week, plus the inclusion of Welsh language songs, messages and adverts at other times.

(Please also include this information in the following sections where relevant)

 

 

1.3             Key commitments: Programming

The station caters for the community by providing targeted and specialist music

programming, discussion programming on local issues and promoting local events.

          Live output will typically comprise 65% music and 35% speech of daytime weekday programming, (‘speech’ excludes advertising, programme/promotional trails and sponsor credits). Outside these hours, the proportion of speech content may be reduced.

          Music will consist in daytime of music from the 60s to the present day. A range of specialist music styles, including Welsh, rock, folk, blues, rock & roll, and country, will also be broadcast, mainly during evenings and at weekends. GTFM will also showcase local bands and Welsh language music.

          Speech content will typically comprise national, regional, local news and sport, interviews, community messages and community information slots, what’s on guide and phone-ins.

          Output will mainly be broadcast in English with some Welsh language content also being broadcast. (The use of other community languages is permitted.)

          The service will typically be broadcast live for at least 12 hours per day weekdays, 11 hours Saturdays and 8 hours on Sundays (live programming may include prerecorded inserts, as applicable).

          The majority of station output will be produced at the main station studios or at University facilities. Some third-party programme material, such as news and features, may also be produced elsewhere.

 

 

[Report back on your key commitments in relation to programming achievements over the

 

past year here.]

 

* Live daytime output music/speech ratio.

We remain confident of satisfying our average 35% minimum speech commitment during the period, though the actual amount of speech continued to vary considerably from hour to hour. In overall terms however, it would be correct to say that weekday morning output, especially from 7am1pm generally contained more speech than the early-mid afternoon period, with a higher percentage returning from 4-7pm due to ‘Drivetime’ travel and news bulletins every 20 minutes and other speech content.

 

Following our previously reported increase in daytime feature minutage, this year saw an increase in speech content on the weekday breakfast show following a presenter change in June 2010. A new hourly sports report summarising local, Welsh and national (UK) was introduced, together with a newspaper front page review, (more) local event information than hitherto, showbiz/celebrity news and new interactive items encouraging listener feedback. For example, on a typical weekday we estimate an average around 45% speech in each hour of this programme between 7 and 9am post July.

 

As in the 2009-10 year a prolonged period of severe weather, this time in December 2010, resulted at times in a considerable increase in daytime speech to the point of it forming the majority of output for periods of several hours at a time. The extra speech was largely practical community information about disrupted services, blocked roads, closed (or closing) schools, updated weather reports and a myriad updates on the changing situation in particular districts phoned-in by listeners. Following Gtfm’s success in providing a detailed local information service during previous weather emergencies, a larger number of bus companies, council services (especially of the County Borough Council) and other organisations contacted the station spontaneously with requests for particular announcements to be broadcast.

 

* Music Variety

Gtfm’s ‘Music of Your Life’ policy continued to satisfy our stated music variety commitments          

including all the named genres, making Gtfm the most musically diverse non-BBC station on the dial in its broadcast area.

 

* Speech Content

The vast majority of Gtfm’s speech content continued to be produced at our main studio centre and was editorially focussed on local issues of one kind or another.

 

In May 2010 celebrations were held in Rhydyfelin, very near our current studios, marking three ‘birthdays’, the 30th anniversary of the Glyn Taff housing estate which overcame early construction and social difficulties to become a pioneering model for social housing in the style of today’s housing associations. It was also the 21st anniversary of the founding on the same estate of Wales’ first Credit Union and in 1999 the founding of Wales’ first community radio station, Gtfm, when it began life as an RSL licencee. The Station Manager had been part of the event planning committee for several months and the station mounted several special broadcasts, including joint promotion with the County Council of a ‘homecoming’ concert at Hawthorn Leisure Centre starring ‘local girl’ Iris Williams OBE, who had also launched the credit union 21 years earlier.        

 

A second long-term talking point in this reporting year was the completion in August 2010 of the very long (30+years) awaited Church Village Bypass, eight kilometres of new road relieving serious rush hour congestion on the busy A473 trunk route between Pontypridd and Llantrisant. Gtfm had followed this project since 2002 and during the 2+ year construction phase broadcast regular bulletins on progress, including warnings of local road closures, overnight working and so on. As work began in 2007, intrepid Gtfm volunteer Howard Griffiths had requested permission to hold a charity walk along the road prior to its opening to the public and in early summer 2010 construction company Costain contacted him at the station to say he could do so in mid August. The ‘888 Walk’ attracted more than 3,000 participants following widespread publicity on Sunday 8th August. Gtfm mounted a full scale outside broadcast from its roadshow rig located next to the start/finish line, courtesy of Costain and Rhondda Cynon Taff County Borough Council. Among talking points at the subsequent official opening by the First Minister of Wales on September 7th (which was also covered by the station) were the ‘door mouse’ bridges Costain had to construct over the new road to satisfy European wildlife conservation legislation, which attracted world-wide attention - and a multi coloured cavalcade of Gilbern cars which were the first vehicles to officially use the bypass. This was particularly appropriate as Gilberns – the only ‘mass produced’ cars ever to be manufactured in Wales in the 1960’s & 70’s were actually designed and made in Church Village and Llantwit Fardre nearby.

 

Another example of a long-running speech theme on Gtfm was reports on/from events surrounding the centenary celebrations of Pontypridd YMCA, located in Taff Street in the heart of the town centre. Again Terry Mann was invited to join the steering committee many months in advance and the station mounted several broadcasts covering various aspects of the organisation’s past, present at future – including a report on the surprise appearance one day of local boy and global singing legend Sir Tom Jones who turned up with a documentary film crew tracing his earliest performance roots at the hall within the YMCA building. On the actual birthday Gtfm mounted a live broadcast & roadshow and interviewed several local ‘names’ including the newly elected town MP, who has become a firm friend and supporter of the station.

 

Broadcast Languages                     

Although English remains the language in majority local use, interest in learning Welsh continues to grow with quite a few local young adults already being fully bi-lingual, where their parents are English speaking only (though their great grand parents may well have spoken the language too). Gtfm continued to reflect these interests with news of Welsh learning initiatives and continued support for its five hours per week of dedicated programming in the language.

 

Live Output

During this reporting year Gtfm managed to increase its fully live weekday broadcasting hours still further, despite serious financial constraints brought about by the joint effects of the recession on advertising revenue and an eight month delay in receiving our biggest Welsh Government grant funding, which resulted in the departure of three full time station staff by summer 2010. As a consequence all output except local news became presented by volunteers and live output hours rose to an average 103 per week, largely because new presenters replaced several previously voice-tracked hours with live output, which resulted in a consequent increase in listener interaction and response at those times.

 

For example, from June 2010 – at the request of the new volunteer presenter - the weekday breakfast show started live at 6am (instead of 7).

 

Local Origination

Following the final departure of the University of Glamorgan’s Creative Industries campus to Cardiff in the previous year, the only regular programme produced by the University in this reporting year was the (three times weekly) 1 x hour all-talk Cardiff City phone-in. Apart from IRN news and sports material only three hours per week (on average) of other output were produced in places other than Gtfm’s own studios or outside broadcast locations within the licence area.     

 

 

 

1.4             Key commitments: Social gain objectives

“(a) the provision of sound broadcasting services to individuals who are otherwise

underserved”

 

          The service will be community-centred, reflecting and representing the community that it serves, including Welsh language content and discussion programming. No other radio service caters just for Pontypridd.

 

“(b) the facilitation of discussion and the expression of opinion”

 

          GTFM will offer air-time for local organisations to broadcast programming on issues of the day or about their organisation, and encourage listeners to engage and participate. A specific target is to ensure that at least five new groups become involved in such activities each year.

          Phone-ins and discussion programming will involve invited guests and/or panels of experts to generate debate on local issues, including local sport.

 

“(c) the provision (whether by means of programmes included in the service or otherwise) or education or training to individuals not employed by the person providing the service”

 

          GTFM has a training programme, parts of which are run in conjunction with the University of Glamorgan. Courses consist of a range of activities varying in complexity and formality. All volunteers complete an induction training course which provides participants with an overview of the station's philosophy and aims, together with some basic technical training. Other ad-hoc training of would-be presenters, contributors and behind the scenes volunteers occurs as needs dictate. Additionally the University of Glamorgan runs accredited and non-accredited courses in all aspects of radio production. These are designed to be appropriate to all levels of learning – from informal sessions on operating a mixing desk to accredited degree level modules in Radio Journalism and Radio Drama.

          The station will promote and provide training opportunities to the wider community either via links with the University of Glamorgan or other local training agencies.

 

“(d) the better understanding of the particular community and the strengthening of the links

within it”

 

          GTFM undertakes to focus on regeneration and working within deprived communities. The station will be a link to other relevant community projects working in this area.

          GTFM will promote the station and the services it offers, such as hosting road shows and fundraising events for the community to participate in.

          In addition the station will provide a platform for other local organisations to promote local activities and events for the community to attend or take part in.

 

 

[report back against your key commitments here]

 

“(a) the provision of sound broadcasting services to individuals who are otherwise

underserved”

 

Gtfm remains the only local radio station broadcasting in - and dedicated to - providing a ‘full service’ programme schedule for the (often under-priviledged) communities it serves.

It approaches this challenge in the tried and tested style pioneered very successfully in the early ‘public service’ days of Welsh ILR, most noteably Swansea Sound in the mid 1970’s. The original Gtfm station format (broad appeal local news/information and music by day and specialist output at night) was developed by founding Station Manager (Andrew Jones) from his experience as a teenage listener to Swansea Sound in those early local radio years - and has been further developed since 2007 by his successor (Terry Mann) who actually helped launch Swansea Sound, including production of its first moments on air in September 1974. A decade later he coined the all-encompassing market positoning slogan ‘Sounds of Your Life’ for a station he was programming to its biggest ever audiences in the Reading area. This phrase has recently been ‘borrowed’ by his former boss Tony Stoller as the title for a definitive history book on this period of British broadcasting history. It is mentioned here because it is an apt description of Gtfm’s approach as it strives to reflect and be a genuine part of the lives of local residents.   

 

During this reporting year Gtfm  continued to find its listeners and volunteers very enthusiastic about this approach to providing an intensly local yet ‘professional’ and entertaining radio service, the effectiveness of which is further enhanced by the fact the station broadcasts to ‘The Valleys’ – including the iconic Rhondda – an area rich in community history, with a ‘spirit’ quite distinctive from that of Cardiff only a few miles to the south.

 

The station’s only regret is that the mountainous topography artificially restricts its broadcast coverage of this ‘natural’ collection of interlinked communities within a fifteen mile radius, though it does its best to reach and serve them on-line*. (*If Ofcom ever considers relaxing its ‘one frequency/location’ per licence rule and contemplates allowing more stations like XS in Port Talbot & Neath, Gtfm would be interested in establishing a small family of locally interlinked stations, including locations like Aberdare and Merthyr Tydfil, plus improved reception in the upper Rhondda and lower Rhondda Fach). Such a development might also possibly make good use of FM frequencies previously earmarked to allow now defunct commercial Valleys station ‘Valleys Radio’ to convert from Medium Wave to FM).                   

 

(b) “the facilitation of discussion and the expression of opinion”

 

During the period Gtfm continued to offer significant editorial support to all manner of organisations operating for the greater good of the local community, both through it’s hourly Community Message service and in other ways ranging from live or pre-recorded full length interviews to shorter features in news bulletins.

 

Local debate/exchange of views on news/current affairs issues was largely encouraged through reporting of all shades of opinion via the station’s hourly local news bulletins, plus longer interviews and features carried in daytime programming. Public meetings were routinely publicised too. The progress of Cardiff City FC (football) and Pontypridd RFC (rugby union) are debated every week during their respective seasons through traditional round-table style studio discussions and phone-ins (in the case of the Cardiff City Phone-In through three one hour programmes each week).  

 

Prior to the UK General Election in May Gtfm interviewed all the candidates for the Pontypridd, Rhondda and Cynon Valley parliamentary constituencies, awarding them ‘equal airtime’ opportunities to explain directly to voters who they are and what policies they stood for. Recordings of these interviews were also posted in mp3 format on the station’s website. Speaking from the stage at the Glyn Taff celebrations and noting that Gtfm had started there the new MP for Pontypridd, Owen Smith, said during his door to door campaign in Pontypridd more people told him they’d heard his interview on Gtfm than had read one in the Welsh national paper The Western Mail.           

 

In January 2010 Gtfm introduced a monthly business programme to facilitate in-depth discussion of particular issues and concerns of relevance to the local business community.

 

(c) the provision (whether by means of programmes included in the service or otherwise) or education or training to individuals not employed by the person providing the service”

 

The high level of interest reported last year from wood-be new volunteers has continued and Gtfm has done its best to train new volunteers and extend the skills of existing ones, achieving overall totals comparable to previous years. But it had to do so against a challenging background. For example, the stations abilty to process applications quickly was compromised to some extent for several months because the financial crisis facing the station resulted, in summer 2010, in the halving of core staff numbers almost ‘overnight’. This imposed a far greater workload on those who remained just performing the routine operational tasks needed to stay on the air. Also, either co-incidentally or as a direct consequence of this increased strain, Gtfm’s part-time Volunteer Co-ordinator went on what turned out to be permanent sick leave in mid August, eventually notifying the station in early 2011 she would not be able to return to the post.  We regret this outcome as the staff member in question was a widely appreciated person who had been with the station in one job or another for much of its life, having taken part in the first RSL broadcast back in 1999.

 

The two remaining staff, the Station Manager and the Admin/Accounts Manager therefore had to take over direct responsibility for organising all station functions from summer 2010 to March 2011, assisted by key volunteers. For example, while the Station Manager maintained local news output until a new journalist could be recruited following the renewal of funding for that post, the Admin/Accounts Manager took over the organisation of volunteer effort assisted by the volunteer breakfast presenter.        

 

On-going recruitment and training at the station was, of necessity, performed on a needs basis during this period. For example, new volunteers who had suggested a new programme idea, or were being initially trained to ‘sit in’ on particular programmes, were given training specifically designed to give them the particular skill-set required for the tasks in hand, with additional focused training given as new skills were required subsequently. The station also managed to continue providing structured job experience weeks for local school students during the period.

 

As for work in the community as a whole, as a consequence of the circumstances described above it was not possible to maintain the previous level of outreach work during the period, especially in local schools (a task performed very successfully for several years by the former Programme Coordinator/breakfast presenter). This was compensated for to some extent by increased editorial involvement with the coverage of significant school based projects involving GCSE and A level aged students, plus Gtfm’s involvement in several large scale outside activities (three of which are described earlier in this report) involving hundreds if not thousands of local people at a time. During both the planning and execution of these and other events - like Gtfm’s hosting of the Ponypridd Town Council’s Christmas lights switch on ceremony in November 2010 - staff and volunteers were frequently involved is explaining the ‘mission’ of the station including its charitable status and the fact its all about volunteering. (During the current 2011-12 year this activity has resulted in Gtfm being chosen by the incoming Pontypridd Town Mayor - who is also Chairman of Pontypridd YMCA – as his chosen charity for his year in office. The incoming County Borough Mayor has also chosen the station as one of her six chosen charities).   

 

Although we continued to maintain a good working relationship with the University of Glamoragn with regard to training, especially by allowing their media degree students to take part in job experience and structured programme production tasks to aid their studies, the fact their Creative Industries operation has re-located to Cardiff – and the fact they were still organising their facilities, constructing studios and so on - made their previously frequent level of involvement in station related tasks like volunteer induction less practical. In the fullness of time, therefore, we are likely to seek new relationships with other further educational establishments based in our area.       

           

(d) the better understanding of the particular community and the strengthening of the links

within it”

 

The continued promotion on-air of the various regeneration related activities taking place across RCT County Borough, both within and outside the scope of the Assembly Government’s Communities First scheme, remained a top priority for the station this year. A key station objective has always been to facilitate and stimulate conversation and communication within the community and the level and effectiveness of this activity is steadily improving as the station and its unique ‘mission’ are becoming more well known.     

 

Additionally, a direct consequence of a much higher level of station ‘visibility’ through participation in several large scale local events this year has been a higher than ever level of enquiries and requests for coverage from charitable and other organisations who had not previously been aware of the services the station offers, or if in some cases the station.

 

A relatively urgent need for a concerted level of new station marketing activity is the central issue which gradually emerged during this reporting year, mainly as a result of an unprecedented amount of advertising sales tele-marketing activity, enhanced by experience meeting a larger than usual number of potential listeners and clients at particular events. Among potential advertsisers, for example, there appears to be some awareness of Gtfm, but not of its potential as a truly cost effective local advertising medium - especially considering the area’s commercial radio outlets are either large scale ‘big city’ or regional operations and are priced accordingly. Therefeore a disproportionate amount of tele-sales time has had to be spent explaining what the station is about/does before the sales aspect can even be discussed. 

 

Under its original (WAG/European) Objective One regeneration funding (2002-5) Gtfm had enjoyed a budget specifically earmarked for expenditure on outside advertsing and promotion which enabled it to undertake bus-back and poster advertising and purchase the roadshow equipment still in use today, plus promotional banners (etc) many of which are now out of date because they promote the original broadcasting frequency (106.9). Apart from an all-households and businesses leaflet drop publicising the frequency change in summer 2007 the station has not since had the funds needed to carry on the outside advertising of itself to any great extent, meaning the considerable post 2007 increase in apparent awareness, actual listener response and enquiries from would be volunteers must have resulted largely from better local reception resulting from transmitter re-location and word of mouth.

 

To this end, we were invited to apply for a new phase of regeneration funding late in this reporting year (and actually did so in June 2011). Up to £80k is available spread over three years for projects designed to heighten the self-sustainability of local social enterprises, largely through new job creation and marketing spend. We have therefore applied for funding for two new part time posts (a Marketing Co-ordinator working closely with our Sales representative and a new part time Marketing and Promotions Assistant), plus cash to spend on outside advertising including a renewed bus-back campaign which is now available to us at an attractive charity rate.                 

 

 

 

 

1.5             Key commitments: Access and participation

Community Radio Order 2004: “It is a characteristic of every community radio service that members of the community it is intended to serve are given opportunities to participate in the operation and management of the service.”

 

GTFM will encourage and local community to be involved with the station as follows:

          A programme of support and training is provided to facilitate involvement. Training includes induction, and then informal training in a variety of roles as well as other support for volunteers. Participation will be invited and promoted via broadcast commercials, the website and promotional literature. As a specific target, each week, the station expects to involve approximately 30 volunteers in its various activities, both on-air and off-air.

          Volunteers present and/or produce programmes (e.g. specialist music output), and work on administrative tasks such as research, the compilation of travel news bulletins and answering the phone.

          The station will develop its training for existing volunteer presenters. As a specific target, each year approximately ten volunteer presenters will undergo further training to help broaden and enhance their skills.

          Work experience and other training opportunities will be offered to local school children and older students, typically for a period of between one and two weeks at the station, depending upon age and interests. Students will follow a specially formulated induction. Target number of placements per year, 10-15.

 

 

[report back against your key commitments here]

 

Gtfm’s overall progress with regard to all these objectives is contained in detailed narrative in response to earlier key commitment requirements.

 

Additionally:

 

1.At least 35 volunteers were involved in Gtfm’s operations in an average week;

 

2.We have gradually improved the quality of station information available via our website;

 

3.We have improved our social network presence on Facebook and Twitter;

 

4.We printed and distributed 500 copies of an A4 promotional leaflet;

 

5,Gtfm has enhanced the skills of at least 10 existing volunteers during the period.

 

 

 

1.6             Key commitments: Accountability to the target community

Community Radio Order 2004: “It is a characteristic of every community radio service that, in respect of the provision of that service, the person providing the service makes himself accountable to the community that the service is intended to serve.”

 

The group will actively encourage feedback by a number of methods:

          Listener surveys will be carried out as often as is practicable. As a minimum, the station expects to carry out such a survey at least once per year.

          The station will actively encourage regular feedback from volunteers (formally and informally). Experienced volunteers will be co-opted onto the station's Management Committee to act as liaison between volunteer membership and station management. The station expects to have two such volunteer representatives on its Management Committee at any one time.

          The station's Management Committee undertakes to operate in a transparent manner and to actively encourage feedback and comments from members of the community. Members of the community may also become involved in the management of the station up to and including becoming a member of the station's Management Committee. (Formal elections to the committee will be held should the number of interested parties exceed places available.)

          Complaints which cannot be dealt with by a member of staff will be relayed to the Station Manager. He / she will take responsibility for reaching a satisfactory conclusion, involving the Management Committee should this be considered appropriate.

         • Where a complaint is upheld, the station will publish details of the conclusions reached on its web-site and also, if appropriate, on air.

 

 

[report back against your key commitments here]

 

Research

During the past year an increasing number of would-be advertisers have asked us about our audience figures – highlighting the urgency of carrying out some kind of industry compatible study in the absence of Rajar. Although our extremely difficult financial and operational situation has prevented us from carrying out such a study again this year, a significant step forward has been to include a research budget in our (currently pending) grant application for regeneration cash to help boost station marketing by a considerable amount. (This application is outlined elsewhere in this document).

 

Meanwhile ad-hoc listener reaction to informal research carried out both face to face and by asking callers to the station a few questions about why they listen, top answers have been  along the lines of: “because it’s local”; “because it’s friendly”; “I can identify with the presenters because they live here like I do” and “I like the variety of music played”.

 

In addition, some of the most locally identifiable volunteers (e.g. Howard Griffiths and Joan ‘The Phone’ Smart) can’t walk far down the street before being stopped or greeted.

 

Volunteer feedback

During the period three of Gtfm’s Management Committee (Trustees) were also active volunteers at the station and a search was started for new recruits when three long standing members indicated, at different times in the year,  they wished to stand down after many years service.

 

Following the landmark Volunteer Meeting on March 15th 2010, refered to in last year’s report, a further meeting was held on 23rd September 2011 followed by another on 8th February 2011 Between these meetings there were regular briefings on the latest position regarding the station/funding and Gtfm management continued its ‘open door’ policy to encourage feedback and the exchange of ideas.

 

Complaints

No complaints were received which weren’t resolved satisfactorily either at the point of initial contact or through the attention of the Station Manager.        

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1.7             Volunteer inputs (see the separate guidance notes)

 

Total number of volunteers:  80+

 

Roles performed by volunteers:

 

Gtfm volunteers performed most of the roles at the station, This included (from June 2010) producing and presenting all the stations programmes.

 

Some volunteers undertook extra duties, including the co-ordination of activity with other community groups and charities in the area.

 

From July 2010 one volunteer also took-on a junior management role, helping to record and schedule features, programmes and interviews for inclusion in programming.

 

Three of Gtfm’s management committee were also active volunteers during the period.

 

The approximate number of hours worked on average per volunteer per week is 6 hours

 

Additional information:

 

As well as presenting all programmes, Gtfm volunteers have also assisted from time to time in local news research and presentation.

 

Road Shows and fundraising events were also manned and (largely) organised by the volunteers.

 

 

 

 

1.8             Significant achievements

Not only remaining on-air, but actually increasing the number of live output hours, against a very challenging operational and financial background;

 

Mounting several successful outside broadcast / profile raising events in such circumstances;

 

Moving to a point where all regular programmes are presented by volunteers, with no discernable drop in ‘professional’ standards or consistency;

 

Attracting the active support of politicians from all parties and at all levels of government in Wales;

 

Securing, with the help of Ofcom, a further five-year broadcasting licence – something which has boosted confidence both within the station and among supporters and potential supporters outside it. By the end of this reporting year several encouraging signs of recovery were becoming evident, even though there is no strong evidence the recession is ending in the South Wales Valleys as yet.      

 

 

 

 

 

1.9             Significant difficulties

Do you wish this section to be kept confidential? No

 

Having to cope with an even more erratic cash-flow situation than the previous year, caused by delayed Assembly Government Communities First funding, together with a further recession-related drop in local advertisng revenue despite more resources being devoted to the local sales process for part of the year.

 

As a consequence staff salaries were often paid late and in the case of staff remaining beyond July 2010, only in part. This caused considerable personal financial difficulty for the staff involved and it is a tribute to their dedication that they stayed in post.  

 

Having to endure further equipment thefts, including a hired stand-by generator, from our transmitter site because we lacked the funds to improve security there.

 

 

 

 

1.10         Audience research

Please provide a summary of any audience research/ data you have collected during the year.

 

As previously stated Gtfm’s extremely difficult financial and operational situation prevented it from undertaking any formal audience research during the period, but a significant step in the direction of doing so (hopefully in the 2011-12 period) was made through the inclusion of a research budget in a (currently pending) grant application for funds to help boost station marketing.

 

Meanwhile ad-hoc listener reaction to informal research carried out both face to face and by asking phone-callers to the station a few questions about why they listen, top answers were often along the lines of: “because it’s local”; “because it’s friendly”; “I can identify with the presenters because they live here like I do” and “I like the variety of music played”.

 

 

 

 

 

Section 2

2               Declaration

I hereby declare that the information given in this annual report is, to the best of my knowledge and belief, true and correct.

Signature

(Alun Jones)

 

 

Name

Alun Jones

 

 

Position

Chairman of Trustees

 

 

Station

Gtfm - operated by GTFM (South Wales) Ltd

 

 

Email address

(c/o Station Manager Terry Mann)  terry@gtfm.co.uk

 

 

Telephone number

01443 406111

 

 

Date

8th July 2011 (late submission by prior agreement with Ofcom staff)

 

 

 

 

Other Documents:
1. Ofcom Community Radio Grant Report - 2005
2. Ofcom Community Radio Grant Report - 2008
3. GTFM's Key Commitments Agreement
4. GTFM Annual Report (to March 31st 2010)  
5. GTFM Annual Report (to March 31st 2009)  
6. GTFM Annual Report (to April 2008) .  

Station details:

 

                 Licence Number

 

CR004

 

                 Station Name

GTFM

 

 

2.2      Please set out the designated purpose of the grant and the amount awarded.

If this was for more than one purpose or post, please set out the different purposes and grant allocated for each.

 

The grant was to enable the GTFM to continue to fund 2 key posts beyond March 31st 2005 when the 3 year EU Objective One funding ended.

 

The posts of Station Manager and Finance Assistant are crucial and without these the organisation could not function. As central management/finance posts they are also among the most difficult to fund via grants.

 

The amounts awarded were:-

 

Station manager      £20,300

Finance assistant    £15,400

 

TOTAL                      £35,700

 

 

 

 

2.3 Please explain how the award was spent, setting out the details separately for

each post or purpose. If it was for a member of staff please include a summary of

work carried out and the main achievements of the post-holder (see also section 2.5).

For example, if it was for a fundraiser, please say how much money they have raised.

If the grant was awarded for any other (non-staff) purpose please provide a

breakdown of costs incurred with the date of the relevant expenditure.

 

The grant was spent on salaries for these posts as per the application and award. In terms of the main work carried out the Station Manager has had to spend most of his time securing the funding and future sustainability of the organisation which was not an easy task. However faced with closure almost a year ago through the ending of our main source of grant funding he has successfully negotiated funding from a number of sources which has meant that running costs for not only 2006/7 have been covered but crucially for 2007/8 as well. Through vigorous lobbying of the Welsh Assembly – almost single handedly last November the Welsh Assembly announced the creation of a Community Radio Fund for Wales – an historic achievement in the development of community radio.

 

The Station Manager has also successfully bid for funding to extend community radio into other parts of the Rhondda Cynon Taff area.

 

The biggest achievement of all has to be that GTFM is still on air after 5 years – sometimes against the odds and is solvent! GTFM still remains the only licensed community radio station on air in Wales

 

The Finance Assistant has been able to develop the organisation’s book keeping and finance records and we now use the SAGE computer package. The Finance Assistant has been able to assist the Station Manager with claiming grant funding and ensuring relevant financial returns are made to all bodies and ensure all income and expenditure is made timely and efficiently

 

 

2.4      The Community Radio Fund Panel is interested in how the grant award has

made a difference to the operation of your station.  Please give us your comments.

 

At an early stage in the development of community radio the award by OFCOM was almost 25% of our annual running costs – these are the most difficult costs to cover. I am pleased to report that in Wales the Community Radio Fund recognises this and is being set up to cover those costs

 

As said above, set against a backdrop of a difficult funding period during 2006 without the OFCOM award GTFM may not be here now!

 

We know that the future will still be very difficult funding wise but with the help of this grant GTFM has made significant inroads towards greater financial sustainability and spreading the risk across a greater number of ( smaller) funders

 

 

 

Ends.

 

 

 

 2 Community radio fund:grant report form 2008

2.1      Station details:

 

                 Licence Number

 

CR004

 

 

                 Station Name

 

GTFM

 

 

2.2  Please set out the designated purpose of the grant and the amount awarded.

If this was for more than one purpose or post, please set out the different

purposes and grant allocated for each.

 

We received a £14,000 contribution in Summer 2008 towards the first year basic salary of the new Sales Executive staff position we were seeking to create.  

 

 

2.3      Please explain how the award was spent, setting out the details separately

for each post or purpose. If it was for a member of staff please include a summary

of work carried out and the main achievements of the post-holder (see also section 2.5).

For example, if it was for a fundraiser, please say how much money they have

raised. If the grant was awarded for any other (non-staff) purpose please provide

a breakdown of costs incurred with the date of the relevant expenditure.

 

The award is currently supporting the basic salary of our new Sales Executive, as originally intended.

 

This new addition to our core staff team joined us in March 2009, following a recruitment process which was delayed for nearly three months by successive key staff absences due to illness plus severe weather in the early part of this year.

 

 

 

We are therefore very pleased to report how, despite the depth of the recession locally - which has resulted in many job losses - the appointee is already having the positive effect we were hoping for on our local advertising bookings.

 

For example, in her first three weeks in post alone she booked seven advertising campaigns – all with new clients.

 

Although we have to remember it is still ‘early days’, very modest projections based on this initial success suggest we could nearly double our local advertising income by the end of the current financial, when compared to the year to March 2009.

 

A number of other advantages are accompanying our increased local sales activity, including:

 

1. The refreshing number of new (local) business names appearing regularly on-air, which in itself can aid the sales process, as well as broadening the amount of locally useful information broadcast;

 

2. Raised listener awareness of this aspect of our funding, demonstrating how GTFM is actively involved in supporting local businesses, some of which may literally lie just around the corner;

 

3. The benefit of having a staff member spending a significant proportion of their working time ‘out’ in the local community explaining GTFM’s (primarily) social ‘mission’ and not-for-profit status, as well as generally improving awareness to the station and the various tangible benefits it offers.     

 

                    

 

 

2.4  The Community Radio Fund Panel is interested in how the grant award has

made a difference to the operation of your station.  Please give us your comments.

 

The strategic importance of the new staff position made possible by this grant award has grown during recent months in a way which could not have been predicted when the Station Manager first mooted the idea about 18 months ago, on discovering the station’s commercial advertising revenue fell well short of the 50% of total running costs currently permitted by the regulator.

 

Having already gained commercial experience running a number of small to medium sized commercial local radio stations he believed there could be considerable un-realised local commercial income potential in the area, especially since the main commercial radio stations are much bigger and would therefore be unaffordable to the majority of smaller local businesses.

 

He was also encouraged by the number of bookings which already resulted from following-up spontaneous enquiries to the station, even though it was not being pro-active in seeking them. This seemed to suggest that the rate-card (which he had re-designed shortly after joining the station) was priced about right. But the only way to find out for sure would be to employ someone specifically to sell advertising and sponsorship full-time in the local area.        

 

He also correctly forecast that having already been supported primarily from public funds for six years, in applying for future assistance the station would increasingly be expected to demonstrate how it was also doing as much as possible to ‘help itself’.

 

Finally, even if there was no actual decrease in the overall size of funds available in the future via grants and other forms of public funding, it seemed likely the ever increasing number of organisations seeking help would necessitate either individually smaller awards, or a prioritisation policy probably favouring new or previously unsuccessful applicants.

 

Therefore, the policy agreed by the Management Committee sought to maximise commercial revenue potential over time (within a strong desire to continue sounding like a community, rather than commercial, radio station), while simultaneously seeking to spread grant funding support among a larger number of sources, each contributing smaller sums. Up to that point GTFM had survived each year on around three large contributions averaging £35-45,000 each from public/grant funders, supplemented by ad-hoc advertising bookings, comprised of roughly equal proportions of local advertising/sponsorship revenue and agency bookings on behalf of the Welsh Assembly Government which the previous Station Manager had been successful in securing.         

 

Inevitably, progress toward these goals has been overtaken in 2009 by the effect of the largely unforeseen world-wide financial crisis and ‘credit crunch’, which has resulted in a drastic drop in the total amount of available money across the commercial, public and voluntary sectors in Wales - to the extent that even formerly ‘rock solid’ Trusts have had to cut back the number/size of donations because the value of (and therefore income from) their investments has plummeted.

 

The biggest single impact on GTFM so far has been the non-renewal (with no prior warning) of our Service Level Agreement with Rhondda Cynon Taf County Borough Council in January 2009. This agreement had been worth £45,000 in the year to December 2008 so its non-renewal had a severe effect on cash flow.

 

Against this background therefore, the virtually immediate success of our new Sales Executive in bringing in additional cash has provided a real lifeline, as well as proving the idea actually works – even though the commercial ‘risk’ of making this staff  appointment had been effectively removed thanks to this immensely helpful Ofcom Community Radio Grant.                              

 

 

3. Community radio licence:

key commitments

 

Licence outline: CR004

 

Station name

GTFM

Community to be served

The community of Pontypridd 

Licence area

Pontypridd (up to a 5km radius from the transmission site)

Frequency

107.9MHz

 

Character of service

 

GTFM will provide a local and inclusive radio service for all residents of Pontypridd.

The aim is to encourage participation by offering training and encouraging volunteer involvement.

 

Programming 

 

The station caters for the community by providing targeted and specialist music programming,

discussion programming on local issues and promoting local events.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Social gain objectives

 

Community Radio Order 2004: “It is a characteristic of community radio services that they are local services provided primarily (a) for the good of members of the public, or of particular communities, and (b) in order to deliver social gain, rather than primarily for commercial reasons or for the financial or other material gain of the individuals involved in providing the service.”

 

“(a) the provision of sound broadcasting services to individuals who are otherwise underserved”

 

 

“(b) the facilitation of discussion and the expression of opinion”

 

 

 

“(c) the provision (whether by means of programmes included in the service or otherwise) or education or training to individuals not employed by the person providing the service”

 

 

“(d) the better understanding of the particular community and the strengthening of the links within it”

 

 

 

 

Access and participation

 

Community Radio Order 2004: “It is a characteristic of every community radio service that members of the community it is intended to serve are given opportunities to participate in the operation and management of the service.”

 

GTFM will encourage and local community to be involved with the station as follows:

 

          Volunteers present and/or produce programmes (e.g. specialist music output), and work on      

          administrative tasks such as research, the compilation of travel news bulletins and answering the phone.  

 

 

Accountability to the target community

 

Community Radio Order 2004: “It is a characteristic of every community radio service that, in respect of the provision of that service, the person providing the service makes himself accountable to the community that the service is intended to serve.”

 

The group will actively encourage feedback by a number of methods:

 

 

 

 

 

 

*All material in italics is direct quotations from the Community Radio Order 2004

 

Section 1

1               Community Radio Annual Report Form

1.1             Community Radio Annual Report Form: Year Ending 31 March 2010

Station details

 

Licence Number

CR004

 

Station Name

GTFM

 

Launch Date

29th April 2002 (as part of the Radio Authority Access Radio Pilot Study)

 

Web address where you will publish this report

www.gtfm.co.uk. Will be published on or before 31st July 2010

 

1.2             Key commitments: programming

 

1. Live output will typically comprise 65% music and 35% speech of daytime weekday programming, (‘speech’ excludes advertising, programme/promotional trails and sponsor credits).  Outside these hours, the proportion of speech content may be reduced.

2. Music will consist in daytime of music from the 60s to the present day. A range of specialist music styles, including Welsh, rock, folk, blues, rock & roll, and country, will also be broadcast, mainly during evenings and at weekends.  GTFM will also showcase local bands and Welsh language music.

3. Speech content will typically comprise national, regional, local news and sport, interviews, community messages and community information slots, what’s on guide and phone-ins.

4. Output will mainly be broadcast in English with some Welsh language content also being broadcast.  (The use of other community languages is permitted).

5. The service will typically be broadcast live for at least 12 hours per day weekdays, 11 hours Saturdays and 8 hours on Sundays (live programming may include pre-recorded inserts, as applicable).

6. The majority of station output will be produced at the main station studios or at University facilities.  Some third-party programme material, such as news and features, may also be produced elsewhere.

 

 

1. Daytime speech output  The concerted effort to increase editorial coverage given to community initiatives (as described last year) will have lifted the speech ratio above the 35% level at times, so we are confident of having maintained our stated average during the period. (The feature policy saw production of more extended feature versions of local news story interviews for broadcast in programming time in addition to other features and live interviews).

                                                                                                                                Gtfm does not impose speech time-limits on its broadcasters – for example the local news bulletins last ‘for as long as they need to’ to convey what are thought to be the important stories of the day. Therefore they can vary in duration from 90 seconds to 3 or 4 minutes, occasionally even longer. A similar rule applies to interviews and local information bulletins conducted in programme time (i.e. between news bulletins), with presenters trusted to devote sufficient time to discussion with guests without individual speech segments becoming over-long in the context of programme continuity. This is usually achieved through music punctuation every four minutes or so, but presenters can decide on the spot if editorial content is sufficiently urgent or compelling to warrant longer periods of continuous speech.

 

An example of this was during severe winter weather in early 2010 when near-continuous reports updating listeners on worsening local road conditions during heavy snow were broadcast as required.            

 

2. Gtfm’s music policy ‘The Music of Your Life’ continued to deliver the variety promised during the reporting year, an approach which offers our broadcast area the widest range of music available on any single non-BBC radio service.   

 

All the specialist music styles named above continued to be represented through dedicated shows, together with a number of others including (smooth) Jazz, 70’s style Funk, Dance, and House. Nostalgia/pre-1960’s music is included at peak time on Sunday morning, following a selection of more traditional/religious favourites at breakfast time. Our ‘decade’ centred sequences (50’s/60’s & 70’s/80’s), continued on Monday evening (every three weeks) and every Sunday afternoon respectively. From Christmas 2009 the weekly Country show joined all the others in being freshly prepared and presented each week under a new presenter following the retirement of its previous long-term host.       

 

During the reporting year our monthly two hour ‘Jazz Connection’ programme ended because the presenter was no longer available, whereas the weekly  Classical Show introduced at the same time in the 08-09 reporting year continued.

 

Improvements to the breadth of Welsh language music variety in our dedicated Welsh language programmes continued and local bands received a boost through the division of ‘Showcase Wales’ into two different programmes, one monthly (2 x hours) and the other weekly for three hours and called ‘New Music Showcase’ (Monday 10pm-1am).

 

3. Speech content subject matter continued to be very largely locally orientated and virtually all produced in-house. Interviews on local issues were routinely included in daytime programming output, starting with a key-story feature spot at 08.25 on the weekday breakfast show,

 

An obvious exception to the local editorial theme was the content of the hourly IRN bulletins, provided by Sky News. Despite our reservations about the 2 minute duration of these bulletins however, following the switch to Sky we perceived an increase in coverage of ‘big’ Welsh stories. While this occasionally caused repetition on weekdays when IRN is followed by our own local bulletins, we were particularly grateful for such coverage at weekends and on Bank Holidays.

 

Our own local news provision continued to prioritise coverage of affairs in Rhondda Cynon Taf County Borough, plus explanation of activities elsewhere likely to impact the lives of local residents - in particular decisions made by  government, be that at the Welsh Assembly or Westminster. The nature of devolved power in Wales (for example for Education and Health) requires great care be taken explaining who has made certain decisions as well as what they actually mean in layman’s terms. The term ‘UK Government’, alongside ‘Welsh Assembly Government’ has been introduced to make this process clearer to listeners, especially when describing the activities of ‘Ministers’ of both tiers of government. 

 

Our staff Broadcast Journalist post continued to prove attractive to new journalist graduates, with the recruitment of a replacement in August 2009 attracting 36 quality applicants.

 

Pre-recorded Community Messages (free ‘ads’ for charitable or not-for-profit organisations/events) continued to be broadcast round the clock at around 15 minutes past each hour with at least a dozen new ones added to the rotation during the period. Meanwhile a larger volume of whats-on’s than ever before were read out on air, together with news of local volunteering opportunities, re-training schemes and charity fund-raising exercises.

 

All sports programming except the Cardiff City Phone-In came ‘in house’ in August 2009 when the University of Glamorgan closed their remaining local studio and moved it to their new Atrium building in Cardiff. This meant the weekly ‘Season Ticket’ Saturday afternoon programme transferred to our main studios, initially with the same volunteer team. This allowed better co-ordination with weekday sports coverage which had always been produced at our Pinewood studios. Following the installation by the University of an audio over IP decoder The Cardiff City Phone-in resumed its 3 x 1 hour programmes per week live from Cardiff, for the first time shared with Radio Cardiff and Bro Radio (Barry).

 

4. Welsh Language output received another boost with its second Interlink volunteering award in a row, this time presented on 12th June 2009 to Ioan Dyer and Gary Ellis for their promotion of the Welsh language via GTFM’s dedicated four hours per week of programming (including Welsh language music). At the end of this reporting year we introduced a fifth hour of Welsh output at breakfast time on Saturday (07.00-08.00). Given the time of day and the fact the vast majority of local people don’t speak the language, Welsh links are paraphrased in English and the music is (approximately) a 50/50 percent language mix. Welsh language music also remained part of the main day and night-time playlist rotation too, at the same percentage mix as before.

 

Virtually all advertising booked on behalf of government has a Welsh language version and if asked we recommend a 4:1 English/Welsh ratio.

 

5. Live output The station continued producing a similar amount of live output as in the previous year, during which the percentage of daytime voice-tracked output reduced a little in favour of more totally live programming.

 

We estimate totally live presentation (i.e. not voice-tracked or pre-recorded) to have averaged at least 372 hours per four week cycle during the period.

 

On a typical weekday ‘live’ output (including on average one hour of freshly voice tracked presentation) extended from 7am to midnight, the vast majority of which was also presented by volunteers. Up to June 09 only the weekday breakfast and drivetime programmes were presented by staff members, but with the cost-cutting redundancy of our Production Assistant the drivetime show became another volunteer presented show. As with other daytime strips from 10am onwards, this programme was presented by several regular volunteers usually on regular days of the week. This approach allowed us to involve a lot more volunteers and get over the problem shared by many of limited weekday daytime availability.         

 

On Saturdays ‘live’ output extended from 7am (or 8, dependent on time of year) to 6pm, followed by an evening schedule comprising four custom recorded weekly programmes between 6pm and 1am, all of which were freshly made each week by regular volunteer presenters. Occasionally the 07/08-midday sequence was voice tracked because the volunteer presenter had to work. 

 

The Sunday programme pattern also remained largely unchanged during the period, with fully live output from 8am – 1pm, followed by custom recorded or voice-tracked programmes until 1am. Once the Country show changed host in December 09 all recorded output was freshly recorded during the preceding week.

 

When voice-tracked and pre-recorded presentation are included we estimate Gtfm produced an average of 508 hours per four week cycle of locally originated and presented programming.       

 

 6. Local origination – As before, virtually all our output was produced either at our own local studios or those of the University of Glamorgan. In August 2009 all but three of the remaining nine hours per week of live University originated output transferred to our Pinewood Avenue base as the University moved their remaining local studio facilities to their Atrium building in Cardiff. The Cardiff City Phone-In was broadcast live from there from autumn 09 onwards via an IP audio link installed by the University.     

 

 

1.2             Key commitments: Social gain objectives (a) The provision of sound broadcasting services to individuals who are otherwise underserved

 

The service will be community-centred, reflecting and representing the community that it serves, including Welsh language content and discussion programming.  No other radio service caters just for Pontypridd.

 

 

Gtfm still provides the only ‘full-service’ local radio service specifically catering for the people living in its transmission area, positioned as it is a few miles north of the area’s main Cardiff-centred outlets, which include (the younger focussed) Red Dragon FM, (regional) Real Radio and (national) BBC Radio Wales. It also became the only broadcast local radio service originated in the Valleys area and available in the western Valleys when UTV closed commercial local station Valleys Radio. New Gtfm listeners in the Cynon Valley resulted from this.

Priority continued to be given to providing up-to-date and locally relevant information at all times. For example, in the early part of 2010, for the second year running, we were proud to have managed to continue broadcasting throughout a period of severe winter weather, during which staff and presenters walked - sometimes for miles - and caught trains because roads were impassable in order to keep the station on-air while others were snowed in altogether. Our Station Manager also walked through snow drifts to our hilltop transmitter site on several occasions to re-fuel a diesel generator keeping us on-air some of the time.

We provided news of flood relief efforts when Rhydyfelin and other parts of the area were hit by violent storms on 6th June 09 (for details see News Archive on our website).

 

During severe weather our largely live evening output allowed us to relay severe weather alerts and flood warnings received without delay.

Our specialist music output contains venue/gig guide and other specifically local information, together with regular feedback from local listeners. The presenters of some of these programmes are also asked to host music events in the South Wales area. For example, Blues Show ‘Bob & Norm’ fronted the 2 day Abertillery Blue Festival in July 09. 

We continued to publicise the fact we operate the ‘only radio newsroom in the County Borough’ because we believe that broadcasting from the heart of our coverage area is a vital ingredient of our service. 

 

 


1.3             Key commitments: Social gain objectives (b) The facilitation of discussion and the expression of opinion

 

1.       GTFM will offer air-time for local organisations to broadcast programming on issues of the day or about their organisation, and encourage listeners to engage and participate.  A specific target is to ensure that at least five new groups become involved in such activities each year.

2.       Phone-ins and discussion programming will involve invited guests and/or panels of experts to generate debate on local issues, including local sport.

 

 

1. Access and participation – by and on behalf of local organisations and individuals continued to be a cornerstone of our community radio service during the period. At least a dozen new Community Messages were produced and scheduled and hundreds of what’s–on and other local announcements broadcast on behalf of a myriad local organisations from small community groups to Pontypridd Town Council and RCT County Borough Council.

 

The station became actively involved in helping its listeners through the Digital TV switchover process through involvement with Digital UK and (via the CMA) the Digital Helpscheme administered by the BBC. This involved the broadcasting of regular announcements, together with phone-ins, interviews and website back-up. The station acted as an advice point for listener queries.    

 

In early 2010 the Station Manager was asked to join a committee organising a 30th Anniversary celebration of the Glyn Taff Estate in May, which would also mark the 21st birthday of Credit Unions in Wales which started on the same estate, plus Gtfm which also started there as an RSL 11 years ago - going on to become the first Community Radio station in Wales from studios just down the road. 

 

Overall we established links with – and gave on-air access to – dozens of new local organisations during the period, well in excess of the five promised. We also continued to encourage volunteering in the community and participation in charitable activity..           

 

2. Discussion and Phone-ins - Day-to-day discussion of local issues continued to be led through our hourly local news bulletins and interviews/feature content in daytime programming. Additionally, one-off studio discussions were mounted on specific subjects as necessary.    

In the field of sport, the Cardiff City (football) Phone-in took place three times per week during the football season (3 x 1 hour all-speech discussions) and the half-hour weekly (all speech) ‘Ponty Rugby Show’ programme continued to discuss Rugby related issues and attract more big name guests.   

 

 


1.4             Key commitments: Social gain objectives (c) The provision (whether by means of 

programmes included in the service or otherwise) of education or training to individuals 

not employed by the person providing the service

 

1.         GTFM has a training programme, parts of which are run in conjunction with the University of Glamorgan.  Courses consist of a range of activities varying in complexity and formality.  All volunteers complete an induction training course which provides participants with an overview of the station's philosophy and aims, together with some basic technical training.  Other ad-hoc training of would-be presenters, contributors and behind the scenes volunteers occurs as needs dictate.  Additionally the University of Glamorgan runs accredited and non-accredited courses in all aspects of radio production.  These are designed to be appropriate to all levels of learning – from informal sessions on operating a mixing desk to accredited degree level modules in Radio Journalism and Radio Drama.

2.   The station will promote and provide training opportunities to the wider community either via links with the University of Glamorgan or other local training agencies.

 

 

1.  As in the previous year, Gtfm continued to experience a high level of interest from prospective new volunteers, with 16 progressing as far as induction and studio training.  We carried out a much higher percentage of our own initial training at the station though as the University of Glamorgan was largely preoccupied with establishing its new Creative Industries base in Cardiff, including the construction of studios, which were not fully functional for some of the period. The majority of our new recruits had at least a little basic media training before we met them however, some of it gained at the University - and we continued to work co-operatively with the University, especially through continued involvement of their third year degree course students.

 

2. Promotion of local training opportunities - continued in a number of ways. We promoted the idea of volunteering at Gtfm and the fact training is provided on-air, via our website and in the local press. Station staff and volunteers also attended outside training sessions to speak about the station and the opportunities it offers.

 

We maintained strong relationships with local educational establishments and training providers, including ‘Interlink’, the volunteering umbrella organisation in RCT. These partnerships resulted in the on-air promotion of dozens of training/re-training initiatives, adult learning courses (etc) at all levels during the year, in addition to the activities of the University of Glamorgan.

 

As well as pre-recorded and live promotions for individual events and organisations, Interlink continued to take advantage of their weekly one-hour morning slot (Thursday 10-11am) to promote particular initiatives and individual volunteering organisations/opportunities in greater detail.                                                                               

 

We continued to provide logistical support including local news bulletins to the two remaining RSL/on-line community projects in neighbouring parts of Rhondda Cynon Taf, the main funding-related objective of which had originally been to increase the technical literacy and computer skills of volunteers from their socially deprived coverage areas.

 

 

 


1.5             Key commitments: Social gain objectives (d) The better understanding of the 

particular community and the strengthening of the links within it

 

1.      GTFM undertakes to focus on regeneration and working within   deprived communities.  The station will be a link to other relevant community projects working in this area.

2.      GTFM will promote the station and the services it offers, such as hosting road shows and fundraising events for the community to participate in.

3. In addition the station will provide a platform for other local organisations to promote local activities and events for the community to attend or take part in.

 

 

1. Regeneration - remained a key feature of Gtfm’s Editorial Policy and the station stayed a member of the Rhydyfelin Communities First Partnership. Also, through its two CF funded staff posts it publicised the efforts of such groups across the whole of RCT County Borough (activity it reported in great detail on a quarterly basis to the funding body). Therefore the station pro-actively covered local regeneration initiatives on a regular basis, mainly via its local news and daytime interview/feature content.

The station also works closely with other local community groups (whether supported by Communities First funding or not), especially within deprived communities, for example the Glyntaff Tenants and Residents Association (GTRA), on behalf of which the very first Gtfm RSL broadcasts were organised a decade ago. 

The station continued to promote other social initiatives including community policing, neighbourhood watch and sustainable energy/recycling.    

2. Promotion - the fact that nearly all output originated from our main studio centre in the reporting year greatly enhanced Gtfm’s ability to promote a ‘joined-up’ identity and image on-air.  It also continued to work on improving the diversity of its own website, as well as establishing a Facebook group and making its local news headlines available via Twitter – a function which was later built into the website so that news headlines were automatically updated there too.

 

The station continued to contribute to its own column in the local weekly paper and issued 1,000 ‘limited edition’ car stickers (July 09) which were eagerly and quickly obtained by listeners. Gtfm was booked to provide summer roadshows at the RCT Homes (housing association) Summer Family Day and Penrhys Carnival, plus Pontypridd Town Council’s Christmas Lights switch-on in mid November.

 

It also broadcast live from a number of outside locations via a portable Comrex facility, including the British Heart Foundation’s Go Red for Heart day (Feb 10). 

 

A challenging cash-flow situation throughout the year (described below) meant we had to shelve any planned marketing activity involving additional expense.

 

 

Significantly therefore – partly prompted by its financial situation – during the year in question Gtfm began more actively promoting the fact it is a registered charity in its own right in order to establish the legitimacy of it being a ‘good cause’ itself worthy of fund raising effort. Previously, while its work in promoting charity fund raising on behalf of others was widely acknowledged, even by its own volunteers who often raised money for other charities too, many local people and organisations appeared unaware that Gtfm was itself a charity. In promoting itself as a worthy cause, Gtfm did not in any way reduce the promotion given to other deserving causes. As a result several Gtfm volunteers started planning events (many of which will occur during the next reporting year) on behalf of the station itself.       

 

Gtfm’s first dedicated fund-raising event for several years was a 70’s night, staged at Pontypridd Rugby Club on 13th August 09, which attracted a ‘full house’ of listeners, some of whom dressed up in 70’s costumes (see Gallery on the website) contributing a very useful £470 to station funds.  

 

3. Platform for other organisations  As already indicated above, Gtfm happily promotes all manner of locally available services and activities.                 

 

 

Key commitments: Additional Social Gain objectives (if any are specified in your licence). Not applicable

 

 

1.6             Key commitments: Access and participation

 

1.    A programme of support and training is provided to facilitate involvement. Training includes induction, and then informal training in a variety of roles as well as other support for volunteers. Participation will be invited and promoted via broadcast commercials, the website and promotional literature.  As a specific target, each week, the station expects to involve approximately 30 volunteers in its various activities, both on-air and off-air.

2.   Volunteers present and/or produce programmes (e.g. specialist music output), and work on administrative tasks such as research, the compilation of travel news bulletins and answering the phone. 

3. The station will develop its training for existing volunteer presenters.  As a specific target, each year approximately ten volunteer presenters will undergo further training to help broaden and enhance their skills.

4.  Work experience and other training opportunities will be offered to local school children and older students, typically for a period of between one and two weeks at the station, depending upon age and interests.  Students will follow a specially formulated induction. Target number of placements per year, 10-15.

 

 

 

 1. Volunteer Induction and training – This process was described in answer 1.4.1 above with 16 new volunteers beginning training during the year.

The average number of volunteers involved in routine station activities in an average week remained around 46. In July 09 Gtfm had a total of 80 ‘active’ volunteers, with quite a few more either resting of going through the recruitment/induction programme, totalling more than 100 altogether, as in the previous year.  

2. As in previous years also, many of Gtfm’s volunteers were involved in the production and presentation of specialist interest music programmes, though (as indicated above) the number involved in weekday daytime output has increased appreciably over the last couple of years as staff on-air involvement has reduced and each programme strip has been shared among several different volunteers on different days of the week - both to give more people a chance to broadcast and to address the fact that the majority of volunteers cannot commit to daily tasks.

Volunteers also remained totally responsible for all on and off-air duties at weekends.

3. Additional Training More than ten volunteers undertook additional training during the year.

 

4. Work Experience During the 09-10 year 12 school students completed work experience placements at Gtfm. We also hosted a job placement for a degree course journalist student from the University of Glamorgan  

 

 

 


1.7             Key commitments: Accountability to the target community

 

1.   Listener surveys will be carried out as often as is practicable.  As a minimum, the station expects to carry out such a survey at least once per year. 

2. The station will actively encourage regular feedback from volunteers (formally and informally).  Experienced volunteers will be co-opted onto the station's Management Committee to act as liaison between volunteer membership and station management.  The station expects to have two such volunteer representatives on its Management Committee at any one time.

3.  The station's Management Committee undertakes to operate in a transparent manner and to actively encourage feedback and comments from members of the community.  Members of the community may also become involved in the management of the station up to and including becoming a member of the station's Management Committee.  (Formal elections to the committee will be held should the number of interested parties exceed places available).

4.  Complaints which cannot be dealt with by a member of staff will be relayed to the Station Manager.  He / she will take responsibility for reaching a satisfactory conclusion, involving the Management Committee should this be considered appropriate.

5.   Where a complaint is upheld, the station will publish details of the conclusions reached on its web-site and also, if appropriate, on air.

 

 

1. Listener Survey  Regrettably, Gtfm’s very restricted finances throughout the period, coupled with prolonged key staff absences through illness, prevented the station from carrying out a full-scale listening survey. This will become a top priority, resources permitting, in the year to come. An enquiry by Gtfm’s Chairman discovered it would cost around £8,000pa for a station like Gtfm to join the Rajar system. Therefore it is likely an industry standard questionnaire will be compiled in-house with fieldwork conducted by volunteers and students.        

 

2. Volunteer Feedback Quarterly volunteer meetings continued this year and also provided useful forums for open discussion of the station’s financial crisis and what could be done to help.

 

For example, at a meeting on 15th March 2010 there was wholehearted support for a volunteer who suggested they should start paying a voluntary subscription to be involved with Gtfm, especially as it gives people looking to enter a media career invaluable on-air experience. (This initiative resulted in several hundred pounds being contributed towards station running cost in the year commencing 1st April 2010)   

During the year three of Gtfm’s Trustees also undertook regular voluntary broadcasts on the station.

 

3. Management Committee Membership of the Management Committee remained at six with a new member (another regular contributor) replacing Dr Alun Hughes when his one-year secondment (from University of Glamorgan Commercial Services) ended. Other membership remained unchanged and included a further two station contributors, one of whom regularly presents daytime programmes. Gtfm’s Trustee’s therefore gained from the recruitment of another local person with first hand knowledge of its broadcasting activities and community involvement.

 

4 & 5. Complaints No complaints warranting either management attention or the formal complaints procedure were received during the period.

 

 


1.8             Volunteer inputs (see guidance notes on page 2)

 

Allowing for multiple appearances an average of 46 volunteers worked on Gtfm output in any typical week in the reporting period, split approximately as follows:

 

Saturday:        

 

9 x main programme presenter/producers + at least 5 sports       

contributors on an average week

 

Total – (at least) 14  

 

Sunday:

 

12 x main programme presenter/producers, one of whom also looks

after morning show phone-answering/reception duties.

 

Total – 12

 

Weekdays

 

Daytime (average week):

 

4 x Community Link volunteer presenter/producers per week 

3 x Afternoon Delight volunteer presenter/producers per week

3 x Drive Time volunteer presenter/producers per week (from July 2009 onwards). All but one of the new drivetime presenters already broadcast so did not add to the overall total.

 

Monday Night:

              

6 x presenter/producers  

              

Tuesday Night:

                 

4 x presenter/producers              

 

Wednesday Night:

 

4 x presenter/producers

 

Thursday Night:

 

4 x presenter/producers

 

Friday Night:

 

4 x presenter/producers

 

Average Involvement 

Different volunteers work widely differing hours, but based on an average involvement of 4 hours per session once a week, a notional monthly average would be 16 hours per volunteer, though this was exceeded in several cases. 

 

 

1.9             Significant achievements

 

Staying on the air and managing to provide a service which attracted several expressions of thanks from listeners despite even more severe winter weather, for longer, than last year.

 

Maintaining a full programme schedule with no discernable drop in breadth or detail in the face of a 25% cut in operating funds resulting from the abandonment without any warning of an SLA agreement worth £45,000 pa by the local authority just before the start of the recession, though blamed on it. 

 

To be awarded a second Interlink Volunteering Award for promotion of the Welsh language.

 

To win a runner up WCVA Green Award for Gtfm’s pioneering work in powering its FM transmissions - as far as is practicable - from sustainable energy sources (wind & sun). Ironically this award was actually presented a week after Gtfm’s solar panels were stolen from its transmitter site.      

 

 

1.10         Significant difficulties

Do you wish this section to be kept confidential?  No

Having to cope with a severe shortage of operating funds (as described above) requiring (approx) £20,000 in savings to be found including one staff redundancy and the need to seek cash-flow bridging finance from Finance Wales.    

 

The theft (in late Nov 09) of the four solar electricity panels partially powering the station’s transmitter on remote farmland, leading to the use of a diesel generator to stay on-air, at the same moment fuel costs started to rise rapidly.      

 

The absence for three months (Jan-March 2010) due to serious illness of the station’s Administrator/Book Keeper.

 

Having to re-apply for Communities First funding support for another year despite showing performance well above all agreed targets to date.   

 

 


1.11         Audience research

Please provide a summary of any audience research/ data you have collected during the year.

 

As stated above, Gtfm was unable to undertake planned audience research due to a shortage of staff manpower and lack of available funding.

 

 

Section 2

2               Declaration

I hereby declare that the information given in this annual report is, to the best of my knowledge and belief, true and correct.

 

Signature

                                           

 

 

Name

                               Alun Jones

 

 

Position

                               Trustee

 

 

Station

                               GTFM

 

 

Email address

                         c/o terry@gtfm.co.uk

 

 

Telephone number

                               01443 406111

 

 

Date                       24th July 2010  (late submission date agreed with Ofcom)

Community Radio Annual Report Form

Community Radio Annual Report Form: Year Ending 31 March 2009

CR004

 

GTFM

 

29th April 2002 (as part of the Radio Authority Access Radio Pilot Study)

www.gtfm.co.uk   This report has been published on our website

 


Key commitments: programming

The station caters for the community by providing targeted and specialist music programming, discussion programming on local issues and promoting local events.

 

  1. Live output will typically comprise 65% music and 35% speech of daytime weekday programming, (‘speech’ excludes advertising, programme/promotional trails and sponsor credits).  Outside these hours, the proportion of speech content may be reduced.

 

We believe, on average, that our daytime output met these parameters during the year to 31st March 2009. While the replacement of three minute on-the-hour UK/International news with two minute bulletins when Sky took over as IRN’s contracted news provider will inevitably have reduced speech content in that category towards the end of this year, this reduction will have been compensated-for in terms of overall speech output by an increase in local feature content proportions implemented during the year.       

 

2.   Music will consist in daytime of music from the 60s to the present day. A range of   

specialist music styles, including Welsh, rock, folk, blues, rock & roll, and country, will also be broadcast, mainly during evenings and at weekends.  GTFM will also showcase local bands and Welsh language music.

 

Gtfm’s ‘Music of Your Life’ mixed-era daytime music format coupled with specialist output continued to deliver the variety we promise during the reporting year. As outlined in previous reports, we are confident this approach offers our broadcast area the widest range of music available on any single non-BBC radio service. During the year, as well as keeping the current playlist up-to-date we carefully added ‘oldie’ titles to our music database, allowing us to rest others to retain a refreshing approach - though the overall proportions of music from different eras remained largely unchanged.   

 

All the specialist music styles named above continued to be represented through dedicated shows, together with a number of others including (smooth) Jazz, 70’s style Funk, Dance, and House. Nostalgia/pre-1960’s music is included at peak time on Sunday morning, following a selection of more traditional/religious favourites at breakfast time. We also have several ‘decade’ centred sequences (1970’s, 80’s etc), including Sunday afternoon and Monday evening. In the case of smooth Jazz and Dance, custom voice-tracked presentation, refreshed for every programme has replaced long term generic link based automation.   

 

During this reporting year we also introduced two new specialist music programmes, ‘Jazz Connection’ a monthly two hour Jazz magazine (Thursday 7-9pm) and the Classical Show, a weekly classical music programme broadcast on Sundays (5-6pm). Both are presented by new volunteers who approached us with their ideas and contain interviews with artists as well as local music ‘gig’ and concert information - as do many of our longer established specialist sequences.

 

Improvements to the breadth of Welsh language music variety in our dedicated Welsh language programmes included an increased proportion of newer releases and artist interviews. Meanwhile local bands continued to be the central focus of ‘Showcase Wales’. Towards the end of 2008 we also arranged and broadcast our own interviews with prominent new Welsh music acts which emerged through ‘reality’ TV shows. ‘Only Men Aloud’, the male voice choir that won BBC tv’s ‘Last Choir Standing’) has several ‘Valleys’ members and recorded features with us in both English and Welsh. We also spoke exclusively to X-Factor runner-up Rhydian Roberts, whose mum was raised in Pontypridd.  

                    

  1. Speech content will typically comprise national, regional, local news and sport, interviews, community messages and community information slots, what’s on guide and phone-ins.

 

Apart from the (in our view) unwelcome reduction by one-third in the number of IRN UK/International news minutes per hour which resulted from IRN’s switch to two-minute Sky News bulletins, we are pleased to report a tangible increase in both the volume and subject-matter breadth of our speech output during the year – the vast majority of which was locally orientated and virtually all produced in-house.

 

National (UK)/International News: Grumbles about bulletin duration aside, the transition to Sky News went smoothly, with no apparent reduction in quality in any sense. Headline national news is also included in ‘twenty-twenty’ headline sequences from 7.20-8.40am and 4.20-6.20pm on weekdays. 

 

Regional and Local News: Although IRN/Sky bulletins covered occasional ‘big’ WeIsh news stories, ‘regional’ in our context also includes Wales-wide (Welsh ‘national’) news alongside larger scale South Wales stories, both of which were covered by our own newsroom in addition to more detailed coverage of local matters.

 

Much ‘Wales-wide’ material involved the decision/policy-making processes of the Welsh Assembly Government, with which we continued to enjoy a close working relationship. Gtfm remains one of very few non-BBC outlets in the Principality to prioritise the inclusion of – and devote airtime to - consciously explaining key WAG decisions in layman’s terms. As a result nearly all Assembly Government Ministers appeared in person on Gtfm news at some point during the year, many of them several times. Where necessary (for example to explain important new initiatives in more detail) ‘sound bite’ coverage in news bulletins was supplemented by full-length interviews in general programming.         

 

Local news stories continue to include local regeneration, healthcare, education, community policing and other initiatives, alongside the many and various activities of Rhondda Cynon Taf County Borough Council and Pontypridd Town Council. During the period there was a tangible increase both in the geographical spread of local story sourcing and the proportion of coverage including quality audio recordings made on location, resulting from increased feedback from local areas added to our reception coverage in 2007 and the recruitment of an MA graduate to our Broadcast Journalist post in spring 2008.            

 

Gtfm’s staff journalist produces hourly local news bulletins for broadcast immediately after Sky/IRN from 6.02am on Monday to 6.02am on Saturday. While the majority of these bulletins are still pre-recorded (usually only minutes before transmission during weekday daytime), in this reporting year our new post-holder has chosen to present an increasing number of her bulletins live.  

 

During the year in question, as part of a planned increase in such output, our Journalist also produced around two hundred full-length interviews/features for use in general daytime programming in addition to her news bulletin work. Most of this material was decided upon in weekly ‘Prospects’ planning meetings presided over by our Programme Co-ordinator who, in turn, was responsible not only for producing the majority of daytime speech features, but also scheduling them. Increasingly too, we are mounting more themed weeks (e.g. Diabetes Week) exploiting local angles and using Welsh spokespeople wherever possible.    

 

On weekday mornings the hour long ‘Goldmine’ oldie music feature was replaced by ‘U Time @ 9’ which includes locally produced ‘lifestyle’ features such as a weekly book review, gardening tips and fashion news.       

Also, especially during weekday morning/lunchtime, our hourly Community Message (see below) and Entertainment Guide features were supplemented by a higher quantity of presenter-read announcements and sometimes interviews about local events and services. In turn we have noted we are hearing more regularly from more local charitable and other organisations, many of whom said they were contacting us because they had found previous promotion of their events on Gtfm effective. Just one example was Llantrisant Male Voice Choir, who recruited new members and reported ‘near sell-out’ concerts as a result of publicity on Gtfm.    

 

A brand new monthly one-hour motoring interest programme began in autumn 2008. Presented by a particularly enthusiastic volunteer who also organised a classic car run on behalf of the station in summer 2008, ‘Drivers Seat’ is broadcast live at 7pm on the first Thursday of the month. Although centred on its speech content, this programme includes some music to punctuate the flow of interviews. We know from feedback that this programme alone has extended our sphere of influence by increasing awareness of Gtfm, as well as recruiting new listeners.           

 

Meanwhile Sport output remained very similar to that in the last reporting period, including the Cardiff City Phone-In three times a week and the Ponty Rugby Show once a week - a programme which has included Welsh rugby legends JJ Williams and JPR Williams in an ever more impressive list of studio guests during this reporting year. The year also included live reports from Wembley by two of our sports team volunteers at the momentous FA Cup Final clash between Cardiff City and Portsmouth, via our Comrex outside broadcast unit.               

 

Output will mainly be broadcast in English with some Welsh language content also being broadcast.  (The use of other community languages is permitted).

 

Bilingual presenter Chris Mason, who teaches Welsh words, phrases and even songs to our breakfast presenter (weekday mornings @ 9.20am) won an Interlink Volunteering Award for his promotion of the Welsh Language at a local ceremony in June 2008. This came in a year when our four hours per week of dedicated Welsh language output was overhauled to increase the variety of speech content and include a wider range of more contemporary music tracks in the language.   

 

The service will typically be broadcast live for at least 12 hours per day weekdays, 11 hours Saturdays and 8 hours on Sundays (live programming may include pre-recorded inserts, as applicable).

 

The station consolidated its position following the previous year’s increase in the number of live broadcasting hours, together with reductions in the proportions both of voice-tracked and staff-presented daytime output as new volunteers came forward.

 

On a typical weekday ‘live’ output extended from 7am to midnight, the vast majority of which was presented in real time by our volunteers.

 

On Saturdays ‘live’ output extending from 7am (or 8, dependent on time of year) to 6pm was supplemented from August 2008 by an evening schedule comprising four new programmes between 6pm and 1am, all of which are custom recorded or voice-tracked freshly each week by regular presenters. These new programmes were suggested at a volunteer meeting by the people who now present them. They wanted to replace an automated sequence containing only generic links and the result is a considerably improved service to listeners at that time of day.

A similar enhancement took place at the same time to Sunday evening output, with live or custom voice-tracked programmes from 8am-8pm supplemented between 8pm and midnight by a sequence of three custom-recorded programmes each week.    

             

  1. The majority of station output will be produced at the main station studios or at University facilities.  Some third-party programme material, such as news and features, may also be produced elsewhere.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          During the year in question all output was broadcast via our main studio centre, except for nine-hours of regular programming originating from the remaining radio studio at the University of Glamorgan’s Treforest campus (Cardiff City Phone-In 3 x 1 hour; Showcase Wales 1 x 2 hours; Season Ticket 1 x 4 hours) - plus a weekly one-hour topical magazine programme made by their third year media degree students, broadcast for approximately 7 months of the year.         

Key commitments: Social gain objectives                                                                

a) The provision of sound broadcasting services to individuals who are otherwise underserved.

The service will be community-centred, reflecting and representing the community that it serves, including Welsh language content and discussion programming.  No other radio service caters just for Pontypridd.

Gtfm provides the only ‘full-service’ local radio service specifically catering for the people living its transmission area, positioned as it is a few miles north of the area’s main Cardiff-centred outlets, which include (the younger focussed) Red Dragon FM, (regional) Real Radio and (national) BBC Radio Wales.

Priority is therefore given to providing up-to-date and locally relevant information at all times. For example, in the early part of 2009 we were able to continue broadcasting throughout a period of severe winter weather, during which presenters caught trains and walked to the studios - while others were snowed in altogether. Also, our largely live evening output allows us to relay severe weather alerts and flood warnings received at those times without delay.  

Even our specialist music output contains venue/gig guide and other specifically local information, together with regular feedback from local listeners.  

We publicise the fact that we operate the ‘only radio newsroom in the County Borough’ because we believe that broadcasting from the heart of our coverage area is a vital ingredient of our service.  We were therefore sorry to learn the Upper Valleys centred, Ebbw Vale based, commercial local station Valleys Radio was expected to close down towards the end of this reporting period, as it was the only other radio service partly covering our area originating from studios located in the South Wales Valleys, as opposed to big cities on the south coast.   

 

 


Key commitments: Social gain objectives                                                   

(b) The facilitation of discussion and the expression of opinion

 

1.   GTFM will offer air-time for local organisations to broadcast programming on       issues of the day or about their organisation, and encourage listeners to engage and participate.  A specific target is to ensure that at least five new groups become involved in such activities each year.

 

To give it greater prominence, as well as marking a clearer distinction between charitable announcements and paid-for messages, our hourly Community Message slot was moved from within the thirty minutes past the hour advert break to its own dedicated clock position at around 15 minutes past each hour. Scheduling of this pre-recorded feature (each one highlights – often through the voices of the people involved - the work and contact information of an individual charitable/service providing organisation) was also extended to overnight and more weekend hours, as was the hourly Entertainment Guide (played at around 45 minutes past each hour).

 

During the reporting period at least thirteen new community messages were produced in-house and added to the scheduling system, in addition to a great many more individual interviews/features publicising the work of locally based organisations.

 

Encouraging volunteering in the community remained a central focus of Gtfm’s output.      

 

2.   Phone-ins and discussion programming will involve invited guests and/or panels of experts to generate debate on local issues, including local sport.

 

Day-to-day discussion of local issues continued to be led through our hourly local news bulletins and interviews/feature content in daytime programming. Additionally, one-off studio discussions were mounted on specific subjects as necessary. Coverage of the Welsh Assembly elections this year included interviewing all Pontypridd constituency candidates and carefully giving them equal airtime, both in terms of duration and broadcast time.   

 

In the field of sport, the Cardiff City (football) phone-in took place three times per week during the football season (3 x 1 hour all-speech discussions) and our half-hour weekly (all speech) ‘Ponty Rugby Show’ programme continued to discuss Rugby related issues, as well as attracting big name guests as outlined in the programming section above.

 

Key commitments: Social gain objectives                                                       

(c) The provision (whether by means of programmes included in the service or otherwise) of education or training to individuals not employed by the person providing the service

1.   GTFM has a training programme, parts of which are run in conjunction with the University of Glamorgan.  Courses consist of a range of activities varying in complexity and formality.  All volunteers complete an induction training course which provides participants with an overview of the station's philosophy and aims, together with some basic technical training.  Other ad-hoc training of would-be presenters, contributors and behind the scenes volunteers occurs as needs dictate.  Additionally the University of Glamorgan runs accredited and non-accredited courses in all aspects of radio production.  These are designed to be appropriate to all levels of learning – from informal sessions on operating a mixing desk to accredited degree level modules in Radio Journalism and Radio Drama.

 

This year we experienced an unprecedented level of interest from prospective new volunteers, greater even than last year’s record-breaking response.

As before, Gtfm’s new volunteers attended at least one of the University run courses outlined above. Station staff also provided further programme contributor training and gave specific instruction on studio operations exclusive to the Pinewood studio site (i.e. our voice-tracking system). In house training is organised by our Volunteer Co-ordinator but undertaken by the majority of staff at one time or another.

A ‘first’ during the year was the live broadcast of a new radio drama about demon barber Sweeny Todd, presented by drama and media course students from the theatre in the University of Glamorgan’s new Atrium building. This ambitious production, complete with gruesome sound effects and specially composed music, went out at 8pm on a Wednesday evening without a hitch. A recording was repeated shortly afterwards on a Sunday afternoon.    

All of our training is provided for and specifically tuned to the needs of the particular individual wherever possible. Therefore, despite the fact several people who started out as Gtfm volunteers now work professionally in the broadcasting industry, we regard such an outcome as a bonus rather than our main purpose in life - which is to encourage improved self-esteem and self-confidence, alongside volunteering in the community.

 

2.   The station will promote and provide training opportunities to the wider community either via links with the University of Glamorgan or other local training agencies.

 

Gtfm continued to nurture strong relationships with many educational establishments and training providers in the area, including ‘Interlink’, the volunteering umbrella organisation in RCT. These partnerships resulted in the on-air promotion of dozens of training/re-training initiatives, adult learning courses (etc) at all levels during the year, in addition to the activities of the University of Glamorgan.

 

As well as pre-recorded and live promotions for individual events and organisations, Interlink continued to take advantage of their weekly one-hour morning slot (Thursday 10-11am) which allowed them to promote particular initiatives and individual volunteering organisations / opportunities in greater detail.                                                                               

 

Station staff and volunteers also attended outside training sessions to speak about the station and the opportunities it offers. Meanwhile Gtfm’s Volunteer Co-ordinator became an accredited trainer at the University of Glamorgan.   

     

We also continued to provide logistical support including local news bulletins and music releases to the three-locality based RSL project in neighbouring parts of Rhondda Cynon Taf, the main funding-related objective of which was to increase the technical literacy and computer skills of volunteers from their socially deprived coverage areas.     

 


Key commitments: Social gain objectives                                                  

(d) The better understanding of the particular community and the strengthening of the links within it

 

1.   GTFM undertakes to focus on regeneration and working within deprived communities.  The station will be a link to other relevant community projects working in this area.

 

Regeneration is a key feature of Gtfm’s Editorial Policy and the station is a member organisation of the Rhydyfelin Communities First Partnership in its own right. Also, through its two funded staff posts it publicises the efforts of such groups across the whole of RCT County Borough (activity it has to report in great detail on a quarterly basis to the funding body). Therefore the station pro-actively covers local regeneration initiatives on a regular basis, mainly via its local news and daytime interview/feature content.

 

The station also works closely with other local community groups (whether supported by Communities First funding or not), especially within deprived communities - more of which it now reaches following its frequency change in summer 2007. Gtfm also maintains its relationship with the Glyntaff Tenants and Residents Association (GTRA), on behalf of which the very first Gtfm RSL broadcasts were organised a decade ago. 

The station also continues to promote initiatives including community policing, neighbourhood watch and sustainable energy/recycling.    

 

2.   GTFM will promote the station and the services it offers, such as hosting road    shows and fundraising events for the community to participate in.

 

Gtfm primarily promoted itself on-air, via its website and in a weekly column in the Observer newspaper during the year in question. It was also still enjoying the residual benefit of awareness stimulated the previous year when it distributed an A5 sized promotional leaflet to 50,000 households and local businesses. Although the leaflet primarily promoted the frequency change, it also gave general station information including volunteering opportunities and contact details, a factor we believe resulted in increased enquiries thereafter. This was fortunate, as other public marketing plans had to be shelved when our financial position became increasingly challenging (see ‘Significant Problems’ below).    

 

In addition to a roadshow and outside broadcast from the switching-on of the Pontypridd town centre Christmas lights (Nov 08) and Cardiff City’s appearance in the FA Cup Final (May 08), Gtfm undertook a number of other live broadcasts, often made possible with reasonable sound quality through its fully portable ‘Comrex’ unit. These broadcasts included coverage of the reception events in Cardiff Bay to welcome Wales’s Olympic and Paralympics competitors back home (several of whom are from our broadcast area).

 

Also, in support of a major co-promotion with the Pontypridd British Heart Foundation surrounding ‘Go Red For Heart’ month (February 09), breakfast presenter Becci carried out a whistle-stop live-link-up tour of events held on Gtfm’s own nominated day, most of which had been organised by local organisations as a direct result of publicity on-air. Station presenters also made personal appearances in support of a number of other local charity events during the year.

 

Significantly also, priority was given during the year to improving the functionality (and therefore the near-instant support potential) of the Gtfm’s own website (www.gtfm.co.uk).

 

 

 

These improvements resulted from the purchase of special software allowing the website to be updated directly from the Station Manager’s workstation, a facility which will eventually be extended to other station computers.     

 

3.   In addition the station will provide a platform for other local organisations to promote local activities and events for the community to attend or take part in.

 

As well as the ‘Community Message’ pre-recorded announcement service outlined above, the station also runs a free ‘Whats On’ announcement service for all events organised on a charitable/non profit-making basis. This service became increasingly popular during the year and many hundreds of ‘whats-on’ announcements were broadcast live by station presenters.

 

 

 

 

 

Access and Participation

 

GTFM will encourage and local community to be involved with the station as follows:

 

1.    A programme of support and training is provided to facilitate involvement.  Training includes induction, and then informal training in a variety of roles as well as other support for volunteers.  Participation will be invited and promoted via broadcast commercials, the website and promotional literature.  As a specific target, each week, the station expects to involve approximately 30 volunteers in its various activities, both on-air and off-air.

 

During the year in question the average number of volunteers involved in routine station activities each week rose to 45, out of an expanded pool of over 100 volunteers in total.    

 

 

2.   Volunteers present and/or produce programmes (e.g. specialist music output), and work on administrative tasks such as research, the compilation of travel news bulletins and answering the phone. 

 

 

Many of Gtfm’s volunteers were involved in the production and presentation of specialist interest music programmes, though they also covered all the other activities outlined above.  For example, volunteers were responsible for all live broadcasts as well as all reception/telephone cover every weekend - in addition to presenting an increasing number of the weekday daytime programmes. During this year a larger number of new volunteer recruits were processed than ever before, resulting in a need to reorganise the evening programme schedule to make room for them all! 

 

 

3.   The station will develop its training for existing volunteer presenters.  As a specific target, each year approximately ten volunteer presenters will undergo further training to help broaden and enhance their skills.

 

More than ten volunteers undertook additional training during the year and communication with our small army of volunteers continued to improve, partly facilitated by the continuation of the quarterly volunteer meetings introduced the previous year. These have proved very successful, both in aiding communication and the exchange of ideas, as well as being a useful (socially enjoyable) ‘bonding’ exercise.

 

Significantly, several ideas from volunteers which directly led to improved programming variety/quality this year were first mooted at these meetings.    

 

4.   Work experience and other training opportunities will be offered to local school children and older students, typically for a period of between one and two weeks at the station, depending upon age and interests.  Students will follow a specially formulated induction. Target number of placements per year, 10-15.

 

During the year in question we estimate that 12 students completed work experience placement at GTFM.


Key commitments: Accountability to the target community 

 

1.   Listener surveys will be carried out as often as is practicable.  As a minimum, the   station expects to carry out such a survey at least once per year. 

 

Regrettably it has not been possible, mainly due to restricted staff organisational resources over long periods, to carry out a formal listening survey during this reporting year. However, we do hope to do so in Autumn 2009. As well as gauging our audience development by comparison with an earlier survey (2005), we plan to probe awareness both in core area locations and places where our signal only became available after the frequency change in summer 2007.        

 

2.   The station will actively encourage regular feedback from volunteers (formally and informally).  Experienced volunteers will be co-opted onto the station's Management Committee to act as liaison between volunteer membership and station management.  The station expects to have two such volunteer representatives on its Management Committee at any one time.

 

Feedback is always encouraged from all directions. In addition to the regular volunteer meetings outlined above, a regular e-mailed newsletter was also introduced encouraging volunteer communication at every opportunity.

 

3.   The station's Management Committee undertakes to operate in a transparent manner and to actively encourage feedback and comments from members of the community.  Members of the community may also become involved in the management of the station up to and including becoming a member of the station's Management Committee.  (Formal elections to the committee will be held should the number of interested parties exceed places available).

 

Membership of the five-strong Management Committee increased to six in summer 2008 due to the one-year secondment of Alun Hughes (from a business discipline at the University of Glamorgan). Otherwise membership remained constant during the reporting period following changes the previous year when two members stood down and were replaced by two station contributors, one of whom regularly presents daytime programmes - thus improving Committee access to day-to-day operational knowledge.    

 

4.    Complaints which cannot be dealt with by a member of staff will be relayed to the Station Manager.  He / she will take responsibility for reaching a satisfactory conclusion, involving the Management Committee should this be considered appropriate.

 

5.    Where a complaint is upheld, the station will publish details of the conclusions reached on its web-site and also, if appropriate, on air.

No complaints warranting management attention or the formal complaints procedure were received during the period.

 

 

Allowing for multiple appearances and taking schedule changes in August 2008 into account, an average of 45 volunteers worked on GTFM output in any typical week in the (second half of the) reporting period, split approximately as follows:

 

Saturday:        

 

9 x main programme presenter/producers + at least 5 sports       

contributors on an average week

 

Total – (at least) 14  

 

Sunday:

 

12 x main programme presenter/producers, one of whom also looks

after morning show phone-answering/reception duties.

 

Total – 12

 

Weekdays

 

Daytime (average week):

 

4 x Community Link/Through Noon volunteer presenter/producers per week 

3 x Afternoon Delight volunteer presenter/producers per week (other contributors not included)

 

Monday Night:

              

6 x presenter/producers   

              

Tuesday Night:

                 

4 x presenter/producers              

 

Wednesday Night:

 

4 x presenter/producers

 

Thursday Night:

 

4 x presenter/producers

 

Friday Night:

 

4 x presenter/producers

 

 

Average Involvement  

 

Different volunteers work widely differing hours, but based on an average involvement of 4 hours per session once a week, a notional monthly average would be 16 hours per volunteer, though this was exceeded in several cases in reality. 

 

          

Significant achievements

During this reporting year Gtfm continued to successfully develop the diversity, quality and consistency of the service it offers to the local community - which in real terms has progressed considerably since the station changed frequency and absorbed the majority of output formally produced at the University of Glamorgan in 2007.

It managed to do this despite a need for remaining staff and volunteers to cover the essential duties of key staff members who were absent due to sickness for prolonged periods, not to mention the logistical problems caused by severe weather and the need to negotiate an increasingly tricky cash-flow situation caused by sudden funding cuts during the first quarter of 2009.

  

Significant difficulties

Do you wish this section to be kept confidential?  No

Although prolonged spells of key staff illness caused frustrating delays to several important station development processes (including updating our Business Plan and recruiting our new Sales Executive), by far the most significant difficulty experienced was the sudden (and un-announced) loss of our annual SLA agreement with RCT County Borough at the start of 2009.

Worth £45,000 in the previous year, the sudden non-renewal of this agreement had the immediate and potentially crucial effect of reducing Gtfm’s total annual income by about 25%.

The decision was apparently caused by major budget cuts within the council, resulting in turn from reduced government subsidies. But we had not been warned in advance this important agreement would not be renewed, so had not anticipated problems with funding in the remainder of the financial year to 31st March, even though we were wary of the possibility reduced budgets would be experienced in the financial year from April 2009.

We managed to stay on the air in the final quarter of this reporting year by cutting all non-essential expenditure and with the assistance of grants from the Welsh Assembly Community Radio Fund, plus additional advertising revenue brought in during the final month of the year by our (Ofcom Community Radio Fund subsidised) Sales Executive, supplemented by larger than average bookings for Welsh Assembly Government advertising campaigns.  

 

Audience research

Please provide a summary of any audience research/ data you have collected during the year.

As described above, we did not carry out any formal audience research during this reporting period, but do plan to do so in Autumn 2009

 

Section 2

 

Declaration

I hereby declare that the information given in this annual report is, to the best of my knowledge and belief, true and correct.

 

Signature                 (signed on printed, posted version)

 

 

Name:                       Gwyneth Whiles           

 

 

Position:                    Trustee/Director (member of Management Committee)

 

 

Station:                      GTFM   

 

 

Email address:        (c/o)  terry@gtfm.co.uk

 

 

Telephone number: 01443 406111

 

 

Date:                          25th June 2009                           

 

 4. Community Radio Annual Report Form

               Community Radio Annual Report Form: Year Ending 30 April 2008

 

CR004

 

GTFM

 

29th April 2002 (according to Ofcom engineering information). During the first few weeks on-air a limited service was provided from studios at the University of Glamorgan after which full-time broadcasting commenced with daytime and most weekend output coming from studios in Rhydyfelin. At this time GTFM was part of the Radio Authority Access Radio Pilot Study and the only such station in Wales. 

www.gtfm.co.uk

 

 


 

Key commitments: programming

[Copy the relevant key commitments from your licence here]

 

1. Live output will typically comprise 65% music and 35% speech of daytime weekday programming, (‘speech’ excludes advertising, programme/promotional trails and sponsor credits).  Outside these hours, the proportion of speech content may be reduced.

 

2. Music will consist in daytime of music from the 60s to the present day. A range of specialist music styles, including Welsh, rock, folk, blues, rock & roll, and country, will also be broadcast, mainly during evenings and at weekends.  GTFM will also showcase local bands and Welsh language music.

 

3. Speech content will typically comprise national, regional, local news and sport, interviews, community messages and community information slots, what’s on guide and phone-ins.

 

4. Output will mainly be broadcast in English with some Welsh language content also being broadcast.  (The use of other community languages is permitted.)

 

5. The service will typically be broadcast live for at least 12 hours per day weekdays, 11 hours Saturdays and 8 hours on Sundays (live programming may include pre-recorded inserts, as applicable).

 

6. The majority of station output will be produced at the main station studios or at University facilities.  Some third-party programme material, such as news and features, may also be produced elsewhere.

  •  

 

[Report back on your key commitments in relation to programming achievements over the past year here.  You should include your average number of live hours per month.  If your average has changed substantially over the year (e.g. your station has increased capacity during the year) you should give the average for recent months but please state this clearly.]

 

1. We believe that, on average, the stated daytime speech proportions were delivered during the year in question. The actual amount of speech varies somewhat from hour-to-hour/day-to-day dependent on interview content (etc), though we normally remain with a music-based format.

 

2. Our ‘wider-than-average’ range of popular music during daytime continued to provide local listeners with a degree of individual song variety not available from any other single non-BBC station audible in our licence area.

 

The overall musical feel of daytime was (and is) melodic in order to appeal to the broadest range of local people, including senior citizens who we believe are mainly attracted by our locally orientated speech content and the friendly approach of our presenters.

 

The full range of specialist music genres listed, plus others, were broadcast throughout the year in question. Welsh language music was included both in the specific Welsh language programmes detailed below and (at low rotation) within ‘routine’ computer-scheduled output, this being a predominantly English speaking area. 

 

3. GTFM has always regarded offering a local news service as of paramount importance. This was (and is) provided in hourly weekday local news bulletins compiled in-house and broadcast after IRN. The station’s Editorial Policy defines Rhondda Cynon Taf County Borough as our main editorial area (a key part of which is our Pontypridd licence area). It also emphasises the station’s particular wish to highlight community regeneration initiatives, life-long learning, safer communities, plus the benefits of sustainable energy and re-cycling.    

 

As a result GTFM has developed a good working relationship with all main political parties, local authorities and the Welsh Assembly Government. During the year in question it regularly broadcast interviews with Assembly ‘cabinet’ (and other) members and covered the Assembly elections.

National (UK) and World news coverage was/is provided in live hourly (3 minute) bulletins by IRN. National (Wales) and regional news plus sports information is broadcast within routine local news bulletins.

 

There were also dedicated sports bulletins at Friday teatime and on Saturday morning (average duration 2 minutes) during the football/rugby union season, together with a weekly (all-year-round) sport and music programme ‘The Season Ticket’ on Saturday afternoon.

 

Additionally, the one-hour all-speech ‘Cardiff City Phone-In’ was broadcast three times a week (Monday, Wednesday and Friday) during both the football seasons covered by this report. Meanwhile our weekly rugby chat show ‘The Ponty Rugby Phone-In’ (one hour, all-speech) ran until the end of the 2007 season in its 7pm Monday slot, returning as ‘The Ponty Rugby Show’ on Friday evening at 6.30pm in autumn 2007. Unlike its football counterpart, the Rugby phone-in had sometimes struggled to attract sufficient studio guests and/or new callers and had also been presented by a member of staff who left the station in summer 2007.

 

The new rugby show is presented and produced by the Supporters Club Secretary of Pontypridd RFC and is proving more popular so far.               

 

4. On average at least four hours of programming was presented each week in the medium of Welsh, supplemented by a weekday morning ‘learning Welsh’ spot for most of the year.

 

5. During the reporting period live weekday output usually exceeded these minimum limits by a large margin, often averaging around 17 hours on weekdays. Although this included some freshly recorded voice-tracked links during some daytime segments, over the reporting year the station sought to gradually reduce the amount of voice-tracking in favour of fully live presentation as it recruited new volunteers. This also meant station staff were called upon to present less programme slots during daytime than had previously been the case.

 

On Saturday live/specifically voice-tracked output accounted for at least 11 hours (typically between 7am and 6pm).

 

From April till August 2007 continuous all-live output on Sunday occupied the period from 8am-3pm, followed by 4 hours of specially voice-tracked programming (3-7pm). From August live Sunday output was broadcast from 8am-1pm, then 3-5pm, with specifically voice-tracked output from 1-3pm and 5-8 pm   

 

6. From April until August 2007 programming came from our main studios except during the periods from 6pm-midnight Monday, Tuesday, Thursday & Friday; 6pm-10pm on Wednesday and 2-6pm Saturday, when programming came from the University of Glamorgan studios.

 

During summer 2007 the University of Glamorgan moved much of its Creative Industries Department from the local campus to its custom-built ‘Atrium’ building in Cardiff. As a result it was no longer able to support its previous level of GTFM programme output, the majority of which re-located to the main Pinewood studio centre.

 

From August 2007 therefore, all output came from Pinewood except for nine hours of output per week from the local University campus studio (‘Cardiff City Phone-In’, 3 x hours, Mon/Wed/Fri @7pm  + ‘Showcase Wales’, 2 x hours, Wed 8-10pm + ‘Season Ticket’ 4 x hours, Sat 2-6pm).

Virtually all our programmes were produced at the above mentioned studios during the year in question. The only exceptions were occasional programmes produced ‘on location’ in the area, sometimes by University students as part of their media degree courses.       

 

  •    

[Copy the relevant key commitments from your licence here]

The service will be community-centred, reflecting and representing the community that it serves, including Welsh language content and discussion programming.  No other radio service caters just for Pontypridd.

  •  

[report back against your key commitments here]

 

GTFM provides what it regards as the only ‘full-service’ local radio service specifically catering for the people living its transmission area – which lies between Cardiff centred (and younger focussed) Red Dragon FM and the Upper Valleys/Ebbw Vale based station Valleys Radio.

  •  

Priority is therefore given to providing up-to-date and locally relevant information at all times. For example, we are the ‘official’ Environment Agency ‘Flood watch’ station for our area and regularly receive faxes and emails allowing us to update our listeners about the state of local rivers and the likelihood of flooding. During this reporting year we also relayed Met Office Severe Weather Warnings having joined that scheme in December 2006.

  •  

Since the majority of live evening output moved to our main studio centre in August 2007 our listeners have benefitted from the near-instant relay of important weather and flood warnings during weekday evenings, a time when programmes on most other ‘local’ stations ere either networked from well outside our area or voice-tracked.     

  •  

Even our specialist music output contains venue/gig guide and other specifically local information, together with regular feedback from local listeners.  

 

 

Key commitments: Social gain objectives (b) The facilitation of discussion and the expression of opinion

[Copy the relevant key commitments from your licence here]

 

GTFM will offer air-time for local organisations to broadcast programming on issues of the day or about their organisation, and encourage listeners to engage and participate.  A specific target is to ensure that at least five new groups become involved in such activities each year.

Phone-ins and discussion programming will involve invited guests and/or panels of experts to generate debate on local issues, including local sport

 

[report back against your key commitments here]

  •  

GTFM broadcast at least one ‘Community Message’ of average duration 30-45 seconds (virtually) every hour of the day and evening during the reporting period, during which the station had at least 50 such messages on routine rotation, scheduled by computer alongside the commercials and music.

 

The station provides production back-up enabling local organisations to script and record these announcements using their own words and voices. Additionally, many other local groups and their initiatives received coverage in our news bulletins and/or programme features.

The activities of dozens (rather than 5) ‘new’ groups were publicised during the year in question.        

 

Day-to-day discussion of local issues was mainly facilitated through hourly local news bulletins and interviews/feature content in daytime programming. Additionally, one-off studio discussions were mounted on specific subjects as necessary. For example, during the period local Assembly Member Jane Davidson made regular appearances talking and being questioned about topical issues.

 

The station and its audience also discussed the affairs of Cardiff City FC in the ‘Cardiff City Phone In’ (one hour, three times a week) and of Pontypridd Rugby Football Club in the ‘Ponty Rugby Phone-In’ and later ‘The Ponty Rugby Show’ (see programming section above for details). Both these programmes are all-speech formats.        

 

 


 

Key commitments: Social gain objectives (c) The provision (whether by means of programmes included in the service or otherwise) of education or training to individuals not employed by the person providing the service

[Copy the relevant key commitments from your licence here]

 

GTFM has a training programme, parts of which are run in conjunction with the University of Glamorgan.  Courses consist of a range of activities varying in complexity and formality.  All volunteers complete an induction training course which provides participants with an overview of the station's philosophy and aims, together with some basic technical training.  Other ad-hoc training of would-be presenters, contributors and behind the scenes volunteers occurs as needs dictate.  Additionally the University of Glamorgan runs accredited and non-accredited courses in all aspects of radio production.  These are designed to be appropriate to all levels of learning – from informal sessions on operating a mixing desk to accredited degree level modules in Radio Journalism and Radio Drama.

 

The station will promote and provide training opportunities to the wider community either via links with the University of Glamorgan or other local training agencies.

 

[report back against your key commitments here]

 

Most of GTFM’s volunteers have attended at least one of the University run courses outlined above. Station staff also provided programme contributor training and gave specific instruction to volunteers on studio operations exclusive to the Pinewood studio site (i.e. voice-tracking). Appropriate training is given to all new volunteers, organised by our Volunteer Co-ordinator.

 

Although several people who started out as GTFM volunteers now work professionally in the broadcasting industry, we regard such an outcome as a bonus rather than our main purpose in life - which is to encourage volunteering in the community.

 

GTFM continued to enjoy a strong relationship with a great many other volunteering groups in the area, especially via the ‘Interlink’ umbrella organisation, resulting in the on-air promotion of dozens of other training initiatives and opportunities during the course of the year. In addition to the broadcast of pre-recorded and live promotions for individual events and organisations, for much of the year Interlink took advantage of the weekly one-hour morning slot (Thursday 10-11am) specifically allocated to it by GTFM to allow the promotion of particular initiatives in greater detail.                                                                               

     

During the year GTFM also provided logistical support including simulcast output, local news bulletins and new music releases to a series of RSL broadcasts which were part of a project to introduce the benefits of community radio to neighbouring parts of Rhondda Cynon Taf.

This project was originally conceived at GTFM by our founding Station Manager and now operates independently. It is funded by Communities @ 1 and is primarily intended to improve the computer and technological literacy of the people in the Treherbert, Penrhys and Penywaun areas. These broadcasts began in July 2007 and featured a (jointly-branded) relay of GTFM’s weekday Breakfast Show, followed at 10am by local programmes in the areas concerned.   

                                                                              

 

Key commitments: Social gain objectives (d) The better understanding of the particular community and the strengthening of the links within it

[Copy the relevant key commitments from your licence here]

 

GTFM undertakes to focus on regeneration and working within deprived communities.  The station will be a link to other relevant community projects working in this area.

 

GTFM will promote the station and the services it offers, such as hosting road shows and fundraising events for the community to participate in.

 

In addition the station will provide a platform for other local organisations to promote local activities and events for the community to attend or take part in.

 

[report back against your key commitments here]

 

GTFM is a member organisation of the local Communities First Regeneration Partnership because regeneration is a key feature of the station’s editorial policy. The station therefore pro-actively covers local regeneration initiatives on a regular basis via its local news and feature content. The station also works closely with local groups (whether supported by Communities First funding or not) within deprived communities. Its longest-term relationship is with the Glyn Taf Residents Association, known as GTRA.

 

The station also promoted community policing initiatives and neighbourhood watch schemes during the reporting year, as well as broadcasting a weekly ‘On The Beat’ spot in which a police officer appealed on-air for listeners’ help with various enquiries.     

     

GTFM promoted its own programmes on-air, via its website and in a weekly column in the Observer newspaper. The station also undertook outside broadcasts from locations including local blood donor sessions, plus the switching-on of the Pontypridd town centre Christmas lights.    

Station presenters also made personal appearances in support of a number of other local charity events during the year.

 

Perhaps most significantly, the station also arranged for the production and door-to-door delivery of A5 promotional leaflets (in June and July 2007) to 50,000 local households and businesses, primarily to promote a change of broadcasting frequency required by Ofcom. As well as giving the all-important new frequency details the leaflet also gave station contact details, promoted its volunteering/training activities and invited anyone interested to come forward.

 

Despite the great risks of a frequency change after several (five) years on-air at a station like ours with very limited financial/promotional resources, we believe the frequency change process – and the leaflet - may actually have enhanced our awareness and listenership, especially in parts of the immediate Pontypridd area not properly served (or not served at all) from our original transmitter site.

 

We believe this because of a subsequent tangible increase in audience feedback/interaction (all of it positive), as well as a flood of new volunteer enquiries, which have reached unprecedented levels.          

As well as the ‘Community Message’ pre-recorded announcement service outlined above, the station also runs a free ‘Whats On’ announcement service for all events organised on a charitable/non profit-making basis. This is very popular with local event organisers and listeners alike and hundreds of ‘whats-on’ announcements were broadcast live by station presenters during the year in question.

 

 


 

 


 

Key commitments: Access and participation

[Copy the relevant key commitments from your licence here]

 

GTFM will encourage and local community to be involved with the station as follows:

A programme of support and training is provided to facilitate involvement.  Training includes induction, and then informal training in a variety of roles as well as other support for volunteers.  Participation will be invited and promoted via broadcast commercials, the website and promotional literature.  As a specific target, each week, the station expects to involve approximately 30 volunteers in its various activities, both on-air and off-air.

Volunteers present and/or produce programmes (e.g. specialist music output), and work on administrative tasks such as research, the compilation of travel news bulletins and answering the phone.  

The station will develop its training for existing volunteer presenters.  As a specific target, each year approximately ten volunteer presenters will undergo further training to help broaden and enhance their skills.

Work experience and other training opportunities will be offered to local school children and older students, typically for a period of between one and two weeks at the station, depending upon age and interests.  Students will follow a specially formulated induction.  Target number of placements per year, 10-15.

 

[report back against your key commitments here]

  •  

During the year in question an average of 35-40 volunteers took part in routine station activities each week. 


Many of GTFM’s volunteers were/are involved in the production and presentation of specialist interest music programmes, though they also covered all the activities outlined above.  For example, volunteers were responsible for all live broadcasts as well as all reception/telephone cover every weekend - in addition to presenting an increasing number of the weekday daytime programmes. We gave supplementary training to more than 10 volunteers during the year and we are improving the consistency of this on-going training over time. 

 

In August 2007, to coincide with the University volunteer’s move to Pinewood studios, we instigated quarterly volunteer meetings which have proved very successful, both in aiding communication/the exchange of ideas and as a social ‘bonding’ exercise.   

 

Key commitments: Accountability to the target community

[Copy the relevant key commitments from your licence here]

 

The group will actively encourage feedback by a number of methods:

Listener surveys will be carried out as often as is practicable.  As a minimum, the station expects to carry out such a survey at least once per year. 

The station will actively encourage regular feedback from volunteers (formally and informally).  Experienced volunteers will be co-opted onto the station's Management Committee to act as liaison between volunteer membership and station management.  The station expects to have two such volunteer representatives on its Management Committee at any one time.

The station's Management Committee undertakes to operate in a transparent manner and to actively encourage feedback and comments from members of the community.  Members of the community may also become involved in the management of the station up to and including becoming a member of the station's Management Committee.  (Formal elections to the committee will be held should the number of interested parties exceed places available.)

Complaints which cannot be dealt with by a member of staff will be relayed to the Station Manager.  He / she will take responsibility for reaching a satisfactory conclusion, involving the Management Committee should this be considered appropriate.

Where a complaint is upheld, the station will publish details of the conclusions reached on its web-site and also, if appropriate, on air.

 

[report back against your key commitments here]

 

No formal survey was conducted in this year and we will prioritise doing so as soon as possible.   

 

Feedback is always encouraged and – as detailed above - we have implemented last years’ stated intention to hold regular volunteer meetings. GTFM’s continued split-site operation in the first half of this report year made communication with volunteers far more difficult than it became after August 2007.

 

The Volunteer Co-ordinator has also encouraged a greater degree of volunteer communication in both directions, presiding over our system to monitor the perceived effectiveness of in-house staff training. 

 

Volunteer inputs (see guidance notes on page 2)

An average of 35-40 volunteers worked on GTFM output in any typical week in the reporting period, split approximately as follows:

Saturday:

              5 x programme presenter/producers + 5 or more sports       

              contributors

              Average total – Saturday volunteers 10  

Sunday: 1 x admin (phone-answering) volunteer

              2 x Sunday Breakfast presenter/producers

              1 x  Old Gold (request) presenter/producer

              2-3 x Spotlight (Arts prog) presenter producers                                                    

              1 or 2 ‘Golden Years’ voice-tracked afternoon presenters

              1 x Country music programmes

               presenter/producer                                          

              1 x Welsh Language evening voice-track presenter

              Average total - Sunday volunteers 10

(Typical) Weekday Daytime:

               1 x Community Link/Through Noon volunteer presenter/producer                  each day + Media student input (10-11am) input on Wednesday,

               later moving to Friday.  

               1 x ‘Afternoon Delight’ volunteer presenter

               Average total - Weekday volunteers – 7 (student and short feature

               contributors not included)

Monday Night:

               Cardiff City Phone-In team included an average 1 volunteers per

               prog;

               Ponty Rugby Phone-In team included an average 1 volunteer per

               prog;

               Retro Show: usually 2 presenter producers (in era rotation)

               Bob + Norm’s Blues Show features 2 x volunteer

               presenter/producers

Tuesday Night:

               Livewire (in Welsh) 2/3 volunteer presenter/producers    

               Clwb Cymreig 2 volunteer presenter/producers

               Highly Strung  average 1 or 2 volunteer presenter/producers

Wednesday Night:

               Cardiff City Phone-In team 1x volunteer (different from Monday)

               Showcase Wales 2 x volunteer presenter/producers

               Rock Show: 1 x volunteer presenter/producer

Thursday Night:

               Livewire: 2 x volunteer presenter/producers

               L’America; 2 x volunteer presenter/producers

               Limelight: Average 1 x volunteer presenter/producer (on rota)

Friday Night:

               Cardiff City Phone-In 1 x volunteer (same as Mon or Wed)

               Livewire: 2 x volunteer presenter/producers               

               Quantize Sessions: 1 x volunteer presenter/producer

               Average total - weekday night volunteers – 24

Different volunteers work widely differing hours, but based on an average involvement of 4 hours per session once a week, a notional monthly average would be 16 hours per volunteer.            

 

 

Significant achievements

 

 

During this reporting year GTFM successfully negotiated several potentially hazardous logistical exercises and emerged the stronger for the experience.

  • In particular these included:
  •  
  • Overcoming very low staffing levels at the start of the period caused by the almost simultaneous departure of several staff including the founding Station Manager;
  • The considerable challenges presented by the need to guide our audience though changes in both our broadcast frequency and our transmitter location (which altered our coverage area); 
  • The successful re-location of a significant proportion of our live evening output from the local University of Glamorgan studios to our main site in August 2007. This required us to undertake a great deal of additional on-site re-training and supervision, responsibilities split between staff and experienced volunteers over different weekday evenings.            
  • Our well-intentioned move to become Britain’s first full time broadcaster with transmissions powered by sustainable energy, which proved a more challenging thing to achieve in reality than our contracted commissioning engineer had anticipated. Consequently our new Station Manager had to learn a lot about sustainable energy in a short space of time in order to organise the gradual re-equipping of the energy capturing system until a satisfactory level of reliability was reached.   
  •  

 

Significant difficulties

Do you wish this section to be kept confidential?  No

 

  • In what was generally a very positive year for the station there were few significant difficulties apart from a couple of long bouts of staff sickness which reduced the effectiveness of other staff in their own roles due to the need to cover their absent colleagues’ work – plus the ‘teething troubles’ referred to above with the sustainable energy part of our new transmitter installation. For example, not even the wind-turbine manufacturer would have predicted the destruction of two such devices by winter storm-force winds in a matter of weeks!
  •  
  • The listener would have been largely un-aware of these difficulties however as no programmes fell silent through the lack of a presenter and there were comparatively few actual transmission breaks caused by the initial power supply problems at the transmitter site.    

 

Section 3

Additional Notes Relating to Excel Spreadsheet Questions

Section 4

Declaration

I hereby declare that the information given in this annual report is, to the best of my knowledge and belief, true and correct.

 

Signature (written copy signed by Dave Jones)

 

 

 

Name

                   Dave Jones

 

 

Position

                   Chair

 

 

Station    

                   GTFM

 

 

Contact email address

                   terry@gtfm.co.uk

 

 

Telephone number

                   01443 406111

 

 

Date          

                   29th September 2008