The latest radio listenership figures have proved music to the ears of RTÉ 2FM — but threw up mixed results for the other stations.
All of the station’s main presenters either saw gains or held steady in the most recent Joint National Listenership Research (JNLR) figures.
While its Breakfast Republic programme saw no year-on-year change in its audience total of 189,000, the other daily shows all made gains.
As he prepares for a break from the airwaves in the months ahead for the Westlife revival, Nicky Byrne’s show with Jenny Green saw a 2,000 increase in its total bringing it to 153,000.
The biggest gains at the station, though, were for Tracey Clifford and Eoghan McDermott.
The former is up 15,000 year-on-year to 142,000 while the latter is up 18,000 to 145,000.
Dan Healy, head of radio strategy and RTÉ 2FM, said: “Eighteen months ago we had a daily reach of 345,000 adults daily and today that has grown by 13.6% to 392,000. This continuous relentless growth is down to the very hard work by those on air and off on 2FM.”
The news was decidedly more mixed for 2FM’s sister station, RTÉ Radio 1.
There were big gains for some shows. The News at One saw a 16,000 audience gain bringing its total to 341,000 and Ray D’Arcy now has 219,000 people tuning in, 9,000 more than a year ago.
Ronan Collins was up 5,000 to 217,000 and Joe Duffy was up 4,000 to 374,000.
However, while Morning Ireland saw no change and remains the most listened to programme in the country with 434,000 listeners, Ryan Tubridy has seen a 17,000 drop to 313,000. Drivetime is down 14,000 to 222,000 and Sean O’Rourke is down 7,000 to 317,000.
For her weekend shows, Marian Finucane had a mixed JNLRs. While her Saturday show is down 4,000 to 346,000, her Sunday show is up 6,000 to 322,000. Miriam O’Callaghan saw a 33,000 jump.
Jim Jennings, director of content at RTÉ Radio, said: “It’s great to see RTÉ Radio maintain over two million listeners per week, and it’s particularly pleasing to see 2FM increase its listenership yet again. RTÉ Radio’s remit is to reach all demographics; and our programme makers consistently deliver on that commitment.”
At Newstalk, the big winner was Ivan Yates. His Hard Shoulder programme is up 22,000 year-on-year to 157,000. Moncrieff also saw a big gain (12,000) to 91,000.
Pat Kenny and Lunchtime Live with Ciara Kelly were both down 1,000 to 149,000 and 101,000 respectively. Newstalk Breakfast held steady at 121,000.
Patricia Monahan, managing editor of Newstalk, said the station was pleased with the JNLR results which, she said, signal a strong performance across its weekday schedule, particularly by ‘Moncrieff’ and ‘The Hard Shoulder’.
At Today FM, Ian Dempsey saw a 7,000 loss bringing his total to 162,000. The mid-morning slot now presented by Dermot and Dave was down 3,000 to 164,000, while Fergal D’arcy in the afternoon was up 15,000 to 112,000 and Matt Cooper’s Last Word was up 1,000 to 137,000.
In Cork, the battle of the mid-morning shows in Cork city between PJ Coogan at 96FM and Neil Prendeville at Red FM remains as tightly contested as ever. This time the latter is in the lead, but only by 1,000, on 77,000.