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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Heart East
The Heart Network logo.svg
CityMilton Keynes
Broadcast areaEast of England
FrequencyFM: 96.1, 96.3, 96.4, 96.6, 96.9, 97.1, 97.4, 97.5, 97.6, 101.7, 102.4, 102.6, 102.7, 103, 103.3
BrandingThis is Heart
SloganTurn up the Feel Good!
FormatAdult Contemporary
First air date
3 June 2019
Website(Heart East localised websites)
Milton Keynes

Heart East is a regional radio station owned and operated by Global as part of the Heart network. It broadcasts to the East of England from studios in Milton Keynes.

The station launched on 3 June 2019, following a merger of four Heart stations in Cambridgeshire, East Anglia, Essex and the Four Counties.


Under relaxed OFCOM requirements for local content on commercial radio, Heart East is permitted to share all programmes between ten licences located in the ITV Anglia broadcast region.[1]

Previously, these licences broadcast separate stations:

By the early 1990s, these stations fell into the ownership of four regional radio groups, namely Chiltern Radio Network, the Essex FM Group, East Anglian Radio and Mid-Anglia Radio. Eventually, all four of these groups were brought by the GWR Group (later GCap Media), which was taken over by Global in 2008.

In 2009, nine of the stations were rebranded as part of the rollout of the Heart network across 29 local radio stations owned by Global. Hereward FM, Northants 96, Q103, Radio Broadland, Horizon Radio and SGR relaunched in January, followed by Essex FM in June. By this point, local programming had been reduced to ten hours on weekdays and four hours at weekends.

The exception was Ten-17, which was part of a separate Hit Music Network, combining its local output from Harlow with networked programming from Nottingham.

During the summer of 2010, Global merged the ten stations in the east of England to four - with Ten-17 closing and joining the Heart network as a result:

  • Heart Cambridgeshire - formed from the Peterborough and Cambridgeshire stations, broadcasting from Cambridge
  • Heart East Anglia - formed from the Norfolk and Suffolk stations, broadcasting from Norwich
  • Heart Essex - formed from Ten-17 in Harlow and Heart's stations in Chelmsford & Southend and Colchester, broadcasting from Chelmsford
  • Heart Four Counties - formed from the Northamptonshire, Milton Keynes, Dunstable and Bedford stations, broadcasting from Dunstable

Local programming was further cut to seven hours on weekdays, although localised news bulletins, traffic updates and advertising continued to air as opt-outs. The Cambridgeshire and Four Counties stations latterly moved from Peterborough and Dunstable to Cambridge and Milton Keynes respectively

On 26 February 2019, following OFCOM's decision to relax local content obligations from commercial radio, Global announced it would merge the four Heart stations into one.[2]

As of June 2019, regional programming consists of a three-hour Drivetime show on weekdays, alongside localised opt-outs for news bulletins, traffic updates and advertising.[3] Local breakfast and weekend shows were replaced with network programming from London.

Global's studio centres in Cambridge, Chelmsford and Norwich were closed, although local newsgathering and sales staff were retained.[2] Across the four stations, fifteen local presenters left the Heart network.[4]


All networked programming originates from Global's London headquarters, including Heart Breakfast, presented each weekday by Jamie Theakston and Amanda Holden.

Regional programming is produced and from Global's Milton Keynes studios from 4-7pm on weekdays, presented by Hannah Clarkson.[4][5]


Heart East broadcasts hourly local news bulletins from 6am-7pm on weekdays and 6am-12pm at weekends.[5] Separate bulletins are produced for the licence areas previously served by Heart's stations in Cambridgeshire, East Anglia, Essex and the Four Counties.

The Milton Keynes newsroom also produces bulletins for the Communicorp owned Heart Hertfordshire.[6]

National news updates air hourly from Global's London headquarters at all other times.


External links

(Heart East localised websites)

This page was last edited on 2 August 2021, at 11:25
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