BBC Three Counties Radio

BBC Three Counties Radio
City Dunstable
Broadcast area Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire and Buckinghamshire
Frequency 90.4FM, 92.1FM, 94.7FM, 95.5FM, 98.0FM, 103.8FM, 104.5FM, 630MW, 1161MW - RDS = BBC 3CR
First air date 24 June 1985
Format Local news, talk and music
Language(s) English
Audience share 5.2% (March 2011, )
Owner BBC Local Radio,
BBC East
Website BBC Three Counties Radio

BBC Three Counties Radio is the BBC Local Radio service for the English counties of Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire and Buckinghamshire (referred to as Beds, Herts and Bucks), broadcasting from studios at Grove Park in Dunstable. The Managing Editor is Laura Moss, who moved from BBC Radio Northampton in April 2012.


BBC Radio Bedfordshire (1985–1993)

The station launched as "Radio Bedfordshire" on 24 June 1985, serving the whole of Bedfordshire plus (despite the name) North Bucks and the northern parts of Hertfordshire. Therefore, as well as Luton and Bedford (and the rest of Bedfordshire), Milton Keynes, Hemel Hempstead, Harpenden, Aylesbury, St Albans, Welwyn Garden City, Letchworth, Stevenage and Hitchin were served by the new station. In 1992 the station became known as "BBC Radio Bedfordshire with Herts and Bucks".

BBC Three Counties Radio (1993–present)

The station changed to its present name on 5 April 1993. The new name was intended to reflect the wider reach across the three counties and to give equal service to all. The editorial area was not, at that point, expanded but enhanced studio facilities and staff were devoted to Buckinghamshire and Hertfordshire.

New transmitters at Epping Green and Bedmond extended the coverage to Welwyn Garden City, Hatfield and west Hertfordshire in late 2005.

BBC Three Counties Radio have studios at Willen in Milton Keynes and have produced separate breakfast shows since October 2001. With the opening of new transmitters in Buckinghamshire, the Milton Keynes opt-outs were extended across the whole county, with a separate drivetime show from November 2004 until October 2005, before producing the separate lunchtime programme which ended in February 2007 with a revamp of the schedule. The Buckinghamshire opt-out was scaled back to a breakfast show for Milton Keynes only, Morning MK with Helen Legh. The studio at Willen was also host to Phil Lack's early breakfast until late 2009. In September 2012, Morning MK was axed and replaced with a breakfast show for Beds, Herts and Bucks from BBC 3CR in Luton.

3CR became available on DAB radio on 14 February 2013.[1]

Since a schedule change in early 2011, the station has been using the BBC Local Radio generic jingles created by Mcasso Music Production. After 30 years at their Luton base, Three Counties moved to brand new studios in Dunstable in June 2015.


BBC Three Counties Radio broadcasts on 90.4FM (Epping Green, near Hertford), 92.1FM (Bedmond, near Hemel Hempstead), 94.7FM (Quainton Hill, near Aylesbury), 95.5FM (Sandy Heath), 98.0FM (High Wycombe), 103.8FM (Zouches Farm, near Luton), 104.5FM (Bow Brickhill, near Milton Keynes), 630 kHz 0.2 kW MW (Lewsey Farm, near Luton), 1161 kHz (Kempston, near Bedford), and streaming from the BBC 3CR website. BBC 3CR is also carried only the Herts, Beds and Bucks digital radio multiplex, transmitted from Sandy Heath, Epping Green, Hemel Hempstead, Chepping Wycombe, Letchworth, Zouches Farm and Bow Brickhill. The digital radio multiplex was initially relayed to, and from, the English county of Northamptonshire. In Northamptonshire, digital listeners could choose between BBC 3CR and BBC Radio Northampton. In the 3CR digital service area listeners could also choose to listen to the BBC Radio Northampton service as an alternative or BBC 3CR. This duplication was withdrawn on 20 February 2015.


The majority of the station's programming is produced and broadcast from Dunstable. During off-peak hours, BBC Three Counties Radio also carries regional programming for the East, produced from sister stations BBC Radio Norfolk, BBC Essex, BBC Radio Cambridgeshire, BBC Radio Suffolk and BBC Radio Northampton. As with all BBC Local Radio stations, it also airs the networked weekday evening shows, originating from BBC Radio Leeds and produced independently by Wire Free Productions. During the station's downtime, BBC Three Counties Radio simulcasts BBC Radio 5 Live overnight.

The station's presenters include Andy Collins, Jonathan Vernon-Smith, Nick Coffer, Roberto Perrone, Geoff Doyle, Luke Ashmead, Justin Dealey, Gareth Lloyd and Helen Legh.

Past presenters

John Pilgrim Presenter Out and About With John Pilgrim Gardening programmes Sunday Mornings, The Knowledge Quiz, Thameslink Quiz, Sunday Live from venues across the Three Counties. Winner International Road Safety Award for best programming of road safety.Published four books based on the Out and About programme.


  1. Radio Today. 14 February 2013. Retrieved 14 February 2013.

External links

Coordinates: 51°52′37″N 0°25′05″W / 51.877°N 0.418°W / 51.877; -0.418

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