Ofcom approves new short-term restricted service licence policy

Ofcom has agreed to change its policy on granting short-term restricted service licences, following a consultation.

The changes, which apply immediately, allow the same applicant to be granted more than two SRSLs in a single year, subject to certain conditions.

SRSL applications can now also be considered for services that offer similar content to existing commercial and community radio stations in the same area.

Ofcom will still have the power to refuse awarding more than two SRSLs per year, giving priority to any new applicant.

Also, on Monday 25 November 2019, Ofcom will open an application window for any potential applicant for an SRSL hoping to broadcast on any dates between Monday 20 April 2020 and Tuesday 26 May 2020 inclusive – an anticipated period of high-demand. The application window will remain open until 5pm on Friday 6 December 2019.

Ofcom says: “Applicants should ensure they are familiar with the application criteria and must use the current version of the application form. SRSL applications submitted using previous versions of the application form will be rejected.”

Short-term radio licences are granted for analogue services broadcasting to defined locations, or for coverage of particular events such as music or religious festivals, or sporting events.