Heart Somerset was formerly Somerset’s Orchard FM, an independent local radio station serving Somerset.
Heart Somerset was originally owned by (and officially remains licensed to) Orchard Media Ltd. But the company was purchased by GWR Group in 1999, and subsequently became owned by GCap Media in 2005.
Somerset‘s Orchard FM (now Heart Somerset) broadcast from studios at Shoreditch near Taunton Racecourse, Taunton, next to the M5.
In November 2005 it was announced that GCap’s local radio stations in the South West, including Orchard FM, were to be sold.
This is because they were outside of the company’s primary target area. This sale was called off in Spring 2006 because the bids received were much lower than hoped.
2008 saw the takeover of GCap Media by Global Radio. On 20 January 2009, it was announced that Orchard FM, along with 11 other stations in Southern England, would be rebranded as Heart on 23 March 2009.
The Heart network now extends to 33 stations across the UK, reaching more than 7.4 million people every week.
Local breakfast and drivetime shows, coupled with national programming from Leicester Square in London at other times of day, including Saturdays with Emma Bunton, means Global Radio offers the national brand of Heart, delivered both nationally and locally – the best of both worlds.
Heart Somerset’s core audience are aged between 25-44. Heart listeners have a spark about them. Despite juggling their various roles as wives, husbands, parents and professionals, they still make time for themselves and are determined to squeeze the most out of life.
They are very social people who enjoy shopping, going out and spending time with their friends and family.
The playlist is driven by passion, playing songs from the 70s, 80s, 90s and 00s, alongside the best current songs.
Presenters are warm, friendly, genuine and easy to relate to, broadcasting appropriate and relevant content that immediately connects with listeners’ lives.