Monday 18 March 2019

Ray D'Arcy got job to do as slot loses 10,000 listeners


Ray D'Arcy
Ray D'Arcy
Marian Finucane
Jennifer Maguire and the Breakfast Republic team
Claire Byrne
Pat Kenny

The afternoon slot on RTE Radio 1, once occupied by Derek Mooney before Ray D'Arcy took over, has lost 10,000 listeners, according to the latest Joint National Listenership Research (JNLR) figures.

Ray got behind the microphone at RTE afternoon radio on February 2 this year after he left his popular mid-morning slot on Today FM.

The weekday programme, which broadcasts at 3pm, has lost 10,000 listeners in the first quarter of the year.

However, a spokesperson for RTE said that they had "written off" the figures for this programme as D'Arcy was not in the role for the full period covered by the JNLRs.

Jennifer Maguire and the Breakfast Republic team

The Breakfast Republic team

"We will look at Ray's ratings in the next three months. There has been a great deal of change in the slot in recent weeks. Comparing to the previous book of ratings would be inaccurate," a spokesperson told the Herald.

Mooney - who has since been appointed as RTE's Wildlife Executive - recently said that he would return to his old slot "in a heartbeat".

One of the big winners was RTE's 2fm as all of the shows either retained or increased listenership. Head of Radio at 2fm Dan Healy said that Gerry Ryan was remembered on the fifth anniversary of his death yesterday.

"The best way we can honour his memory is to put 2fm back on the map and return to the ratings he had," he said.

Ryan Tubridy also had cause to celebrate as his show increased by 12,000 to a daily listenership to 189,000.

"This is a good news day for the Tubridy Team. We have a lot of fun making the show and we've noticed a huge increase in the flow of texts and mails, which is very heartening," Ryan said.

Claire Byrne

Claire Byrne

"I'm loving the job and am very grateful to the hardest working and most fun team in radio."

There was also success for the team at The Nicky Byrne Show with Jenny Greene, and Rick O'Shea in the Afternoon, who have both increased by 10,000 to 150,000 and 121,000 listeners respectively.

Meanwhile, Breakfast Republic, hosted by Jennifer Maguire, Bernard O'Shea and Keith Walsh, increased by 9,000 to 109,000 daily listeners compared to the final quarter of 2014.

While the majority of shows on RTE Radio 1 lost listeners, Morning Ireland still remains the most popular show in the country with 417,000 listeners.

Sean O'Rourke saw his show go up by 5,000 listeners to a high of 303,000.

"We're really pleased with the figures, it shows that we're going in the right direction," O'Rourke said.

"The show is still evolving, I'm there less than two years now, but I've settled into it.


"It's the best job I've ever had and these figures are really encouraging. There were some dire predictions when I took over but that hasn't happened. We won't be resting on our laurels though, we still have lots of work to do."

Another big winner was Claire Byrne, who saw her Saturday show gain a large jump of 14,000 to 220,000.

Marian Finucane leads the weekend schedule at Radio 1 with 366,000 on Saturdays, but her Sunday slot saw a decrease of 16,000 to 335,000.

Meanwhile, over at Newstalk, Pat Kenny remained static at 142,000 listeners while The Right Hook increased by 12,000 to 138,000 daily listeners.

"After 19 months on Newstalk, The Pat Kenny Show is on track to reach its target of 150,000 listeners after two years," station editor Garrett Harte said.

Also maintaining their audience is Off The Ball, presented by Ger Gilroy and Sean Moncrieff, with 119,00 and 49,000 listeners respectively.

On Today FM, Dermot & Dave's show increased to 121,000 - up 5,000 - while Ian Dempsey increased 7,000 to 194,000.

"It's brilliant that we seem to have kept our regular loyal listeners entertained," Dempsey said.

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