So you want to find out about us here at Gravity FM? Right, here we go...
Gravity FM is a community radio station based on the bank of the River Witham in Grantham, Lincolnshire, UK. We are run almost entirely by volunteers who give up their time to keep the local community in touch. Broadcasting 24 hours a day on 97.2 FM and online at www.gravityfm.net, we aim to provide a high quality interactive broadcasting service to the local area.
In 2005, The Office of Communications (Ofcom) started granting community broadcasting licenses to create community radio stations, a third tier of radio stations after the BBC and commercial radio.
Community radio stations like us are bound by certain rules. They must be operated for the good of the public, and must provide what is termed 'social gain'. Gravity FM CIC was awarded a full time community license in March 2008 and began full time broadcasting in December 2008 on 97.2 FM. While the BBC is run from 100% of our radio and TV license fees, and commercial radio stations can generate unlimited profits through selling advertising, for Gravity FM and other community radio stations, the Community Radio Order 2004 dictates that no community radio station is allowed to earn more than 50% of their revenue from on air advertising or sponsorship.
Whilst Gravity receives good support via advertising revenue, OFCOM regulations say we have to balance this by raising 50% of our running costs through grants, donations, fundraising - we face a challenging time as vital grant sources are now threatened because of ongoing cutbacks. All our presenters are volunteers, giving their free time to be a voice for the community. However, the ever increasing overheads - electric, gas, water, OFCOM broadcasting licence fee, Phonographic Performance License, Performance Rights Society, web streaming fees, rent, broadband bills, etc still have to be found. We don't just broadcast, we also train all members of the community from young to old and all those in between. Each year we also provide essential work experience placements to students and young people wanting to pursue a career in the field.
Gravity FM also gets out and about to help support local groups and promotes organisations in the community who may not have access to mainstream media, our Community Radio Key Committments Reports will tell you more. There is no other independent radio station based locally - we are the first choice for local news, views and information in Grantham and the surrounding villages. We're looking for the support of local people and businesses to ensure Gravity FM continues to provide the same level of service and benefits to the community as we have done since 2008.
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