Sydney’s 2CH becomes SEN as Crocmedia confirms sports format

Crocmedia is re-launching 2CH as SEN 1170 SEN, with the Sydney station’s new owners confirming a move to a sports format.

The station was purchased by Craig Hutchison’s Pacific Star Network in June, and now the latest SEN station welcomes Fox League commentator Andrew Voss for a new Breakfast show.

Despite reports to the contrary suggesting that 1170AM would retain a Classic Hits format, Hutchison has now told Mediaweek the station will be “Sydney’s new home of sport.

“We are moving ahead with a sports led format in Sydney with 1170 SEN,” he said, noting the station will have the rights to “virtually all sports”, and admitting there was never a plan to keep 2CH.

1170 SEN will remain a DAB+ station when it launches, but there is no set launch date at this stage. Factors will include the state of coronavirus in Australia, but Hutchison confirmed it will definitely be up and running before the NRL Grand Final and standalone State Of Origin series.

“The back end of this year in Sydney is too compelling an opportunity for us,” Hutchison said.

“There is rugby league and an Australia – India test series, Big Bash League, A-League, The Everest and The Golden Eagle and the Australian Open golf. An enormous calendar of sport in Sydney from mid-October through to the end of February.”

The transition appeared to have started earlier this week when 2CH oddly turned into an exact double of 2UE for a few hours on Monday, August 17.

“The issue was caused by technical changes required to separate Classic Hits 2CH from the Nine Radio Network, and resulted in Radio 2UE being broadcast instead of Classic Hits 2CH on DAB+, the APP and streaming,” a spokesperson explained to Radio Today.

 

PSN CEO Craig Hutchison

On the appointment of Voss for Breakfast, Hutchison told MediaWeek the new program will be “sports plus, he won’t be afraid to go beyond sport if and when he needs to.

“He has a lot say and he is a real identity we think audiences will connect with.”

Hutchison said the station will be locally-programmed from 6am to 6pm, except “an hour of Gerard Whateley that will be for Sydney audiences which will air around lunchtime.”

1170 SEN Sydney will join 1538 SENTrack Sydney, which launches this Saturday, August 22. The two stations will be housed in North Sydney where new Crocmedia studios are being built.

SEN previously announced the appointment former Southern Cross Austereo and Australian Radio network executive Simon Dennis group commercial director for NSW, who is “super excited” to be back in radio.

Its NSW sales will be headed up by Sydney head of sales Simon Dennis, with guidance from national head of sales Patrick Moloughney.

Crocmedia plans to have 20 stations on air by 2021 including 15 broadcast licences as well as several DAB+ stations.

2CH will remain available on DAB+ and live stream radio.

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Graham
19 Aug 2020 - 11:54 am

Strangely enough, not all of Australia likes to listen to sport 24/7. 2CH is my go to station for music and relaxation. From niw on my radio will go to the scrap bin and I will be listening to my CD collection,
Some radio execs really need to consider the rest of the population. There are any number of radio stations out there pushing sport into our ears everyday of the year.
Lets keep some music content for those of us who still like music and personalities.

Graham Barry

The Auditor
19 Aug 2020 - 2:47 pm

Graham, unfortunately 2CH, as a music station, was losing around $2 million a year. An owner cannot sustain those losses forever.

Hkn
19 Aug 2020 - 4:07 pm

Oh dear…. I’m in my 30s and I really enjoy 2CH music format much better than Smooth , more Smooth Relax profile. They were very good competition to 2DayFm in ratings battle lol… Probably 2UE Nine will take from them some %. I don’t see them winning with strict sport format….

James
19 Aug 2020 - 4:42 pm

I loved Classic Hits 2CH. I streamed it in beautiful stereo into Newcaste. No comparable station jp here. Love Tim Webster.

David
19 Aug 2020 - 5:14 pm

If you want good relaxing music, try streaming easy music 3MP which is a Melbourne am and DAB+ station.

David
19 Aug 2020 - 5:34 pm

Remember 2UE Sydney
Magic 1278 Melbourne
Magic 882/ 4BH 882 Brisbane all became talking life style then that failed then nine media tried all sports format that failed so looked at them now. They have reverted back to their normal call signs and playing music.
Same with 1377 3mp Melbourne perfectly good music station until SEN decided to turn that into a racing station called SEN Track but that failed and 3MP has returned to a easy music format. Maybe 2CH could become a digital only station with the same format with a better sound than crackling am and DAB+ even sounds better than FM

Jan
19 Aug 2020 - 5:36 pm

That is very disappointing news. I love 2CH as it is. I will have to look for another station. There is already too much sport on AM Radio.

thewilfer
19 Aug 2020 - 6:45 pm

It’s a shame about the end of 2CH in it’s current music format as most listeners in Sydney and those in the radio industry/wider media know it. However if the station has been losing $2 million worth of revenue per year then it is not sustainable as a business and changes need to made. 2CH’s demographic is generally over 55 years of age and plays advertising for businesses including funeral homes, retirement villages, aged care facilities, chemist/pharmacies and plant nurseries. While 2CH’s audience has some money to spend, they are not as attractive as say the 25-54 demographic. That said, Crocmedia did recently sell the 1377AM licence (SEN 2) to ACE Radio Network who have brought back 3MP and the old easy listening format for both the Mornington Peninsula and wider Melbourne radio market…so maybe history will end up repeating itself with 2CH in several years from now ?

Brad
19 Aug 2020 - 7:49 pm

Dumb move and it will certainly upset a lot of people, as it has me. I collect, restore and display one of Australia’s finest collections of old valve radios and every one of them is tuned to 2CH. This will change obviously due to the new owner butchering a successful format with the world’s oldest radio announcer running one of the flagship programmes.

Croc Media – you are going to do your dough.

Rob
19 Aug 2020 - 8:08 pm

The management of 2UE must be grinning from ear to ear! Hopefully they will take on 2CH’s very worthy and talented announcers and merge these two station’s formats. I’d give 2CH six months and then it will switch to Country. There is nothing else left once 2UE settles in 2CH’s once loyal listeners. It will be too late then to revert to its current format.

Peter
19 Aug 2020 - 8:11 pm

For those worried about 2CH I have emailed the station and they have advised it will be continuing in DAB, the web and the 2CH app

Michael
19 Aug 2020 - 10:44 pm

According to Mediaweek, it is the Commonwealth Bank who is funding the recent expansion by the company. I hope they’ve got deep pockets. There is some history in Australian media of banks funding massive buyouts, or expansions, and being left with licences that are not worth very much. That’s when the good media operators swoop in and grab a bargain. Methinks that may happen again.

James
20 Aug 2020 - 4:48 am

It didn’t work for Macquarie Sports Radio so why would it work for SEN in Sydney , I’ll give it 6 months .
Don’t get me wrong I like sport but won’t go out of my way to listen to it on the radio all day .

Bad move Hutchy

Mick C
20 Aug 2020 - 5:30 am

Sentac???

They planning on taking on Sky
racing?

It wont work

Joe
20 Aug 2020 - 6:58 am

It is sad to see 2CH go this way. Poor management and not communicating deeply with listeners is always a problem for any radio station. There were changes made over the years without much consultation with listeners. Listeners did not like the decisions made to get away from its Christian foundation and changes to the music.

24/7 sport did not work for 2UE. I doubt it will work for 2CH.

Isn’t this the only radio station on the AM dial? Why would you get rid of it?

Colin.
20 Aug 2020 - 8:09 am

Poor old Tim Webster he got out of the failed Macquarie sport network to go to 2CH to play music and now it’s happened to him again cant take a trick Tim.This wont work there is very little interest in 24/7 sport on radio..they’ll be back to music within 6 months wait and see…

Ray Stuart
20 Aug 2020 - 12:02 pm

Very sad news about 2CH. The airwaves are already saturated by sport news, and this leaves people over 50 years alone and deserted if easy listening music. However all is not lost, there is a radio station in Newcastle ( streamed online) that is a little gem that plays the nbest music for over 50s. It is Radio1629am and is superb. Radio1629am.net and you can listen online, on your smartphone or tablet. They play the best oldies songs .

Colin DUFF
20 Aug 2020 - 2:32 pm

I hope the new owners of 2CH lose their money. 2CH was the only station in Sydney to cater to an older demographic. I know radio stations have to make money, but 24/7 sports programming won’t work. People watch sport…….they don’t listen to it.

I feel sorry for Tim Webster, Bob Rogers, Trevor Sinclair etc. They are all intelligent people who were interesting to listen to.

Bob
20 Aug 2020 - 3:15 pm

Well all 2CH listeners you can tune into Radio 50 Plus 93.3 FM Central Coast which plays music for the 40 through to the 1985. It is on line and apps. The music is played 24 hours a day, with news on the hour and weather and rail and road reports as well. gGeat station.

Rad brown
20 Aug 2020 - 5:07 pm

It’s all about money…
2ch could never make any money out of Big Mac’s, Tampons or Coke…Nor Gambling adds…
Or Alcohol…
Funeral parlours yes… Retirement Yes…
It’s loyal audience was too old to make advertising logical for it’s owners…
Having said that…
It’s not all about money!!!
Big companies who borrow big time look for a profit…
These people will fail!!!

Neil
20 Aug 2020 - 7:18 pm

Sorry Sydney but you’re loss is our gain. Because Hutchy needed a SEN in Sydney he sold 3MP to Ace Radio which now plays great music, to buy 2CH. He has had low ratings for SEN in Melbourne for years (around 2-3 %) but this doesn’t seem to bother him. Once he gets a station he hangs on to it. Time will tell whether expansion will break him eventually, but I’m sure he’ll be around for a while. Macquarie Sports Radio was national so rugby people turned off AFL and vice versa. Local sports and personalities is a different ball game.

Maureen Jones
21 Aug 2020 - 1:11 am

You’ll all just have to get a DAB radio. 2CH Classic Hits will continue as it is on that and also on the App and online, I believe. Only the AM station will change.

Peter Johnson
21 Aug 2020 - 12:42 pm

2CH is currently rating around 3%. They are going to switch to a similar format to Macquarie Sports radio which rated around 0.6%.

Do management really think people are going to be tuning in to listen to the State Of Origin and NRL Grand Final on 2CH?

These people seriously know nothing about radio.

Neil
22 Aug 2020 - 1:21 pm

Will 2CH-DAB have disc jockeys or just play automated music. Does anyone know ?

Marie
22 Aug 2020 - 6:48 pm

Sad day for 2CH listeners and the great announcers that were there too.
Can’t imagine anything worse than all day sport. Doubt this will survive in Sydney.
Thankfully 3MP has restarted as a great easy music format station. Loving the familiar voice of Trevor Sinclair and others on 3mp.

Read the article
24 Aug 2020 - 12:39 pm

Did anyone not read the article? 2CH will still go on, just on DAB+, iHeartRadio, RadioApp and on the web.

Neil
24 Aug 2020 - 6:57 pm

Yes we did read the article but it fails to mention whether the announcers will be part of it. Automated music is not the same as having voices between songs.

FayeHyde
26 Aug 2020 - 6:34 pm

What will Tim Webster, Trevor Sinclair and all the staff do? Hope they go to 2UE and not be lost forever. I thank them for all the happiness they have given us over the years. They will all be missed

maria anagnostou
31 Aug 2020 - 8:35 am

I for one & many others of my age group(late 60’s, early 70’s) hope that the sports channel falls flat on it’s face. We need a radio station to keep us happy. There is enough sport already on radio, even if not full on sport stations, there is still plenty said on other stations. 2UE tried the sports station & it failed, so hope this one does too. Many listeners to 2CH probably think the same as me, as we need our daily dose of “happy”music.

Anna Smith
2 Sep 2020 - 3:54 pm

Thank you to Tim Webster, Trevor Sinclair, Chris Kearns and all staff for the really terrific music, back stories, informative comments at 2CH… 1170 am
How sad!!! (Big population of ageing folk).
And if SEN fails as 2UE did,(and others with 24/7 sport), hopefully we’ll see you back.
Anna Smith

Richard Horsnell
4 Sep 2020 - 10:53 am

To bad so sad to 2ch going to sport, seems we now go another station sorry to see you go

Richard

Fiona MacKenzie
5 Sep 2020 - 12:14 pm

I am saddened to hear that 2CH is going to SPORT SPORT SPORT there are plenty of listeners that couldn’t give a flying fig about sport!
Most of 2CH’s listeners are over 50 and women whose days of patching kiddies up and listening to them regaling is with stories of what happened on the field so now they want to think of happier times , hence listening to CLASSIC HITS. Don’t do this Crocmedia!
Your loss hopefully will be 2UE’s gain switch to them Mr Webster & Ms Harris love your work!

Frederick Poole
6 Sep 2020 - 8:32 am

It will be so sad to say goodbye to 2CH. Our alarm is set to 1170 as is all our car radios and other tuners throughout the house. Yes I follow sport but I get more than enough of that through other media. When I am at home or in the car I prefer enjoyable music. 1170 is the place that I found it. As they say “everything changes”but I have found it never seems to change for the better.

Lloyd
7 Sep 2020 - 9:38 am

It will probably go the way of the recent Macquarie Sports Radio which was around for about a year before it met its demise. People are probably OK with sports 2 or maybe 3 hours per day. Probably no market for 24/7 sports stations in Australia, even for a sports loving nation like Australia.

geoffrey goldingay
10 Sep 2020 - 9:00 am

I am disgusted at the changes in format to sports. A whole generation of oldies will be gutted as we are. Wrong wrong move.

David
10 Sep 2020 - 9:15 am

We live in the Illawarra and our radio is locked onto 1170 AM for our style of music. Streaming or Dab not really an option so farewell to our fav station when sport takes over.

Bruce Robjohns
13 Sep 2020 - 12:11 pm

As I write (12noon 13th September 2020), not one of the thirty-six comments posted so far is positive about the move from Classic Hits to Sport.

Sorry, I make it thirty-seven. No, I am not really sorry.

I live in regional Queensland, there is no DAB and very few FM stations. With a long wire aerial and an old style Communications style receiver we enjoy 2CH most nights on good old AM 1170

When available we do stream 2CH from the internet but as regular motorhomers, internet coverage is pathetic and as such not a realistic option very often. When travelling there few places in Australia where 1170 AM cannot be received at night on a good car radio.

Not blackmail but it is time to talk to your sponsors and suggest they may need to review advertising if they want/need our continuing business.

As other correspondents have mentioned, the 24/7 sport format has been tried previously in other Australian cities and has been a disaster in every case. I was in South Australia when the old 5DN tried and failed the sports experiment, it has returned to the Easy Listening format.

Bruce BCOP retired (Licensed Radio Station Operator)

tony
13 Sep 2020 - 1:04 pm

you will lose a lot of listeres as a lot of people do not have dab radios in there cars and to upgrade is too expensive i shall look elesve

Ken Hull
16 Sep 2020 - 12:29 pm

I agree with Graham Barry. I will miss the 2CH format. If I want sport I will watch it on TV with music in my ear. As for shock jocks bury the bastards. Most of them like all media do shock to attract audiences but you can’t discuss with them as they have control of the button.
Will miss the blokes on 2CH atm.

Mark Harmer
20 Sep 2020 - 9:09 pm

G,day , liked the format at 2CH mainly 70’s music . Dont like overpaid sports wanks so dont watch or listen , you want me to listen to 2CH on db YOU buy me the radio to suit as i havnt changed you have ! Good bye 2CH hello 2UE .

Ray Byles
25 Sep 2020 - 4:58 pm

Sorry, but you have lost us,(and many of our friends) as we cannot stand Andrew Voss, and will be unable to listen to our/your classic hits in our car. Such a shame as we enjoyed the music. It won’t be long before you return to your current format.
Ray Byles (and friends)

Paul
29 Sep 2020 - 7:20 am

To sum up, are we saying the AM version of 2CH will become a 24/7 sport station whilst the DAB version of 2CH will stream music without announcers?

“Technical glitch” separating 2CH from 9 is a fairy story.

John
30 Sep 2020 - 1:43 pm

Does this mean we can’t stream classic hits 2CH anymore as I tried to do it this morning 30 Sept 2020 and all we get is a tone from TuneIn radio and no music??

Mark
2 Oct 2020 - 2:16 pm

2CH Are you reading all the comments?
Read the ones that say
“That’s a Great Idea”
Won’t take long.
If I want sport it’s available now.
People want to watch sport if they are in the car maybe listen , but they are not going to listen when there is a TV for a better experience.
I don’t like sport so you will be losing a listener.
I won’t be streaming it on the app and I don’t have a DAB radio in my car.
Good luck, I think your going to need it.
Looks like I know why Bob Rodgers left.
Bad Decision

Brad Inwood
2 Oct 2020 - 8:01 pm

Why would a station that i listen too for nice calming and relaxing music change to sport?
I have no interest in listening to sport so i am afraid I will have to get a new station after 40 years.
Quite sad.

CM
4 Oct 2020 - 3:02 pm

Not happy, we enjoy classic hits and find sport a huge turn off and that’s exactly what we will be doing.

Lobo
5 Oct 2020 - 8:53 pm

What a blow..the only station I enjoy listening to is 2CH.. I really don’t understand what they say about us still being able to listen to music from 2CH a different way.
All these years..now nothing ..2UE music is not anywhere as good as the tunes that 2CH are playing..and now 93 year old Bob has retired..don’t blame him.

Glenn
6 Oct 2020 - 3:26 pm

‘Macquarie Sports Radio’ (announced in a macho tone by a voice over guy) was a total disaster, so why go down a similar track? Changing 2CH to an all sports format will be a disaster so you’re about to lose a lot of money. Good! Total sports formats don’t work and never will.
Prediction: The 24 hour sports format will fail and the station will revert to another format within 12 months.
Who are the genius radio execs behind such a ridiculous decisions?
On the AM band, 2CH had a proud And long history – as did 2UE. That history is about to be flushed down down the proverbial radio sewer.

Patricia Newton
22 Oct 2020 - 9:57 am

Please help me find my 2ch. We as Baby Boomers are a huge part of the population and require some semblance of recognition with our access to “ our “ music from our era.
I can’t get didgital reading in my car or on my home sterio of my kitchen radio.This is just discrimination against our generation.
Bring back our music.

Colin Burgess
22 Oct 2020 - 1:16 pm

We have had our radio tuned to 2CH every day for decades, and enjoyed it being the constant background music to our daily life. We live in the Sutherland Shire and last year we bought a a DAB radio but had to return it as would not pick up DAB where we are – quite a common problem, the salesperson told us. We bought a new car a few months back, and 2CH is still on that, but now I have tuned our home radio in to 2UE, which at best plays satisfactory music. Thank you, new owners, for taking away one of the pleasures of our life and that of thousands of other seniors and replacing it with yet more damned sports talk. May this “venture” fail miserably.

Patricia Gaudry
22 Oct 2020 - 4:18 pm

I was overjoyed when I found my much loved music on 2CH over twenty years ago. That and the ABC are the only radio stations I listen to when driving.
What a sad sad day it was to tune into some non stop talk about sport instead of music. How do I put DAB in my 15 year old car?
I wish the sport a very short life and a review of audience numbers with a view to going back to the old format.
Yours faithfully
Another disgusted former listener

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