The controversial closure of RTE’s longwave 252 radio service has been postponed until at least 2017, a Fine Gael TD has confirmed.
John O’Mahony, the Fine Gael TD for Mayo and Chair of the Oireachtas Transport and Communications Committee has expressed his delight at RTE’s announcement that they are to retain the service until at least 2017.
“This service benefits thousands of Irish people living abroad and is a crucial part of RTÉ’s public service remit,” he said.
The service was initially due to be suspended in October, but pressure put on the Irish government and RTE by groups in the UK meant the closure was postponed until January 19 to allow relevant parties engage with affected listeners.
Many Irish residents in Britain rely on the longwave service to keep up to date with news from home, and there were questions as to whether the most vulnerable listeners could use digital radio to access the radio’s broadcasts.
However, the broadcaster will reduce the hours it is available in 2016 moving towards a full shut down the following year.