Moyles' infamy helps Radio 1 win 534,000 extra listeners

Click to follow
The Independent Online

His list of infamous radio moments include an offer to take a teenage Charlotte Church's virginity and a recent reprimand by industry regulators for calling women "dirty whores".

But infamy does not appear to have done Chris Moyles' popularity any harm. The outspoken DJ has achieved record ratings for his BBC Radio 1 show, according to quarterly figures released yesterday by the industry body, Rajar.

Moyles' breakfast show audience rose to 6.79 million, an improvement of 472,000 on the quarter and 534,000 on the year, his highest figures since taking over the morning slot from Sara Cox in January 2004.

A spokesman said The Chris Moyles Show had a ratings boost when the DJ broadcast from Germany during the World Cup. His appearance on a celebrity version of ITV1's The X Factor also raised his profile.

In June this year, Ofcom criticised the presenter and his colleague, the drive-time host Scott Mills, for breaching the broadcasting code by swearing and using inappropriate content.

Radio 1 has had its audience rise overall by 689,000 to 10.4 million in the past three months.

But Chris Evans has lost 150,000 listeners since he took over the Radio 2 drive-time show from Johnnie Walker, posting ratings of 4.85 million. Jo Hamilton, head of research for BBC Radio, dismissed the suggestion that Evans's first audience figures were a disappointment.

"We did expect to see some change because Chris Evans is very different from Johnnie Walker, and a 150,000 drop in a five million audience is not a significant drop. What we tend to see is a drop, then a new audience coming in, which can take six months to settle."

Radio 4's audience of 9.19 million shrunk by 100,000 on the quarter and 400,000 on the year, with ratings for the flagship Today programme falling from 6.12 million last quarter to 5.87 million. A spokeswoman said Today had a much busier news agenda in the same quarter last year, including the general election and the death of the Pope.

Magic 105.4 was the top London commercial radio station for a second consecutive quarter, with 1.87 million listeners a week.