Salvatore Scifo, University of Westminster, Communication and Media Research Institute (CAMRI), salv...@communitymedia.eu
Since its introduction in 2004 Community Radio has grown rapidly in the UK outnumbering 200 stations licensed over the last 6 years. The regulation does make this sector very distinct from mainstream broadcasters and requires the community radio stations to be filling the spaces not covered by larger and mainstream broadcasters. The author argues that the birth of Community Radio (CR) in Britain cannot be understood unless it is placed in the context of New Labour social and cultural policies. This paper therefore offers a background to the development of British CR between 1997 and 2009 by identifying and analysing areas of government social, urban, cultural and media policies which, arguably, shaped the context where community radio operated, and, specifically, its conception within the framework of a particular view of community life and its regeneration.