SRSLs: July to August 2013 application process and other changes
We have made some minor changes to the way we process short-term restricted service licence (SRSL) applications, with immediate effect. These are as follows:
Submission of applications
Applications cannot be submitted more than six months in advance of the intended start date of broadcasting.
RSLs for religious events
In line with our requirements in respect of all other event-based broadcasts, applicants wishing to provide a service connected to a religious event or festival must provide a letter of support from the head of an appropriate local religious body or place of worship (e.g. a Mosque, Church or Gurdwara). This should clearly state the purpose of the broadcast and the organisation's support for it, have the appropriate contact details and be signed and dated.
Identity of applicant and licensee
The full names of the applicant and proposed licensee should be given in the application form, i.e. they should match those in a passport or UK driving licence (a copy may be requested for verification.)In due course we shall make the necessary amendments to our document 'Restricted Service Licences: Notes for Applicants', as well as the application form, and re-issue these on our website.
Application process for SRSLs during July and August 2013
Anyone wishing to apply for a SRSL to provide a service during (or including) any dates from early-July to mid August 2013, is strongly encouraged to apply during the 'window' below.
Ramadan falls within this period and, based on previous experience, we expect to receive a large number of applications to run radio stations at this time. As a result, in some locations in the UK, due to the high demand for SRSLs and the limited FM frequencies available, we expect to have to allocate licences by way of a draw. The large number of applications we expect to receive also makes it impractical to accept applications on the usual 'first come, first served' basis.
Applicants are therefore invited to submit their application for a licence to provide a service during July and August 2013 during the period starting Tuesday 8 January 2013 and ending on Thursday 10 January 2013 .
- Only a fully completed and signed application form, accompanied by a cheque for the application fee of £400, can be considered. (Please note any problems with payment of the application fee, such as bounced cheques, will mean an application will not be deemed eligible for award or the draw.)
- Applications for a service linked to a religious event (e.g. Ramadan) must include a letter of support as set out above.
- No changes to proposed transmitter sites will be permitted, other than where a change is necessary due to circumstances beyond the applicant's control.
- Applicants are reminded that multiple applications from the same group for the same area are not permitted.
In places where only one application is received we may be able to offer a licence to that applicant. However in areas where we receive a number of competing applications, we will draw lots to decide between them, as we have done in previous years. All licence awards are subject to the availability of suitable frequencies. Due to the general lack of suitable FM frequencies, particularly in major conurbations, groups in the same region may be competing for frequencies with one another, even though the areas they wish to cover do not overlap. This may apply to some applications which may appear to be in 'uncontested' areas. In such cases, we may have to put applications into a draw to decide between them. If SRSL applications for other purposes are received during this period but for overlapping dates, they may be considered alongside applications for broadcasting for the Ramadan period, and as a result may be included in any draw.
We intend to hold the draw soon after 10 January 2013 and will then inform successful applicants when technical checks have verified the availability of a suitable frequency, and payment of the fee has cleared through our bank. The draw will not be available via our website.
Applicants are reminded that SRSL application fees are not normally refundable. Thus, if an application is entered into the draw and is unsuccessful, the application fee will not be refunded. Similarly, the fee will not be refunded if an applicant subsequently decides to withdraw their application.
The winning group in each area will be granted a licence for the purpose they applied for, subject to the application complying with the rules set out in our notes for applicants (see link below).
Any application for a licence to provide a service during July/August 2013 that is received after the dates specified above, can still be considered for a licence, but only if it is for a broadcast in an area for which we have not already received an application, and subject to frequency availability.
SRSL operators are reminded that if they wish to broadcast charity appeals they need to comply with the requirements of the Ofcom Broadcasting Code. The broadcaster needs to take reasonable steps to satisfy itself that the charity appeal organisation concerned can produce satisfactory evidence of charitable status, or, in the case of an emergency appeal, that a responsible public fund has been set up to deal with it. Further details can be found on our website: http://stakeholders.ofcom.org.uk/broadcasting/broadcast-codes/broadcast-code/commercial-references-radio/ We may ask broadcasters for further information about how much money is raised in any appeal, the recipient organisation and for evidence that all the funds raised have been used for charitable purposes.
All short-term restricted service licences are issued at the discretion of Ofcom, subject to the conditions for their issue being met (as set out in the document 'Restricted Service Licences: Notes for Applicants'), and the availability of a suitable frequency. Application forms and Notes for Applicants can be downloaded from: http://www.ofcom.org.uk/radio/ifi/rbl/rsls/rslapps/