Bosses at Radio Leyland own up to f-word gaffe

Radio Leyland staff celebrate the launch of the station
Radio Leyland staff celebrate the launch of the station

Red faced radio bosses have escaped punishment after allowing a song containing the ‘F’ word to be broadcast during a breakfast show.

Radio Leyland owned up to the embarrassing gaffe itself.

Ofcom, the UK’s communications regulator took this into account when deciding what action to take against the station.

The volunteer-run, community radio station for Leyland, Farington, Moss Side, Clayton-le-Woods and Buckshaw Village on 104.8 FM, only launched in April.

The incident happened on the station’s Breakfast Show on June 24, at 8.49am.

The FM community radio station played the song “Another Love” by Tom ODell, which included the word “f******” in the following lyrics:

“So I use my voice, I’ll be so f****** rude they always win, but I know I’ll lose”.

The station notified Ofcom who considered the broadcast raised potential issues under the following rules of the Code:

Rule 1.14: “The most offensive language must not be broadcast . . . when children are particularly likely to be listening . . . ”

Rule 2.3: “In applying generally accepted standards broadcasters must ensure that material which may cause offence is justified by the context . . . Such material may include, but is not limited to, offensive language . . . Appropriate information should also be broadcast where it would assist in avoiding or

minimising offence”.

Ofcom sought answers from the station and said: “In the initial email received by Ofcom, the Licensee said the breach was immediately recognised by the presenter, the station manager, and several Radio Leyland volunteers who were listening, and the track was faded out before its end and the presenter apologised.

“It continued that the track was removed from the playlist immediately, and that the incident will be raised at its “regular music vetting meeting”.

“The Licensee also confirmed that no listener complaints had been received.

“In response to Ofcom’s request for comments on how the content complied with rules 1.14 and 2.3, Leyland Community Radio apologised for the incident and expressed how seriously it takes its responsibilities as a broadcaster.

“It apologised for the incident and expressed how seriously it takes its responsibilities as a broadcaster. It added that it “endeavoured to comply” with the Code, and that since the incident, a two-stage vetting system had been introduced which would re-evaluate music from “1990 to present”.

“In addition, the Licensee said any new songs will be vetted by two board members before being added to its playlist, and that it will “continually review and adjust [its] procedures with a view to complete compliance.”

Ofcom pointed out at that under the regulations people under 18 are protected from unsuitable material in programmes. It also said that the most offensive language must not be broadcast when children are particularly likely to be listening. However, it recognised that the presenter took immediate action by fading out the track and apologising to listeners for the language.

In addition, the station reported the incident to Ofcom itself, confirmed the song would be deleted from its playlist to prevent future broadcast and implemented new compliance procedures to ensure no similar recurrence.

Station manager Brian Ashman said: “We messed up, we fessed up. Luckily Ofcom were kind to us and found the case resolved. We’ve taken all possible steps to avoid this happening again.”