Goodbye to Sunderland radio station Sun FM

The name has gone after almost three decades
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The old Sun FM logo.The old Sun FM logo.
The old Sun FM logo.

Sunderland radio station Sun FM will no longer be a brand name after almost 30 years of broadcasting.

The change came into effect on Wednesday, May 1.

The station had been serving Sunderland since replacing Wear FM in 1995. Between 1995 and 2000 it was named Sun City FM.

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The station has now been rebranded as Nation Radio North East.

It was taken over in 2018 by Wales-based media company Nation Broadcasting, which owns 12 independent radio stations across Britain, including Nation Radio UK and stations based in Scotland, Wales, Suffolk, Yorkshire and the south of England.

Some of the former Sun FM's locally based shows and presenters will remain, while there are opt-outs for news, weather, sport and travel. However, the majority of the station's output will be networked programming from Nation Radio UK.

Sun FM's Facebook page has also been taken over by Nation Radio North East and so far not all of the public's comments have been favourable, with concerns about a loss of local identity.

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One contributor said: "I see what was Sunderland's local radio station has a Cardiff telephone number."

Another said: "Another great local station killed off by corporate banality."

A third opinion was: "Ridiculous, they could have still kept the name."

But Nation’s chairman, Jason Bryant, has said: “Strong, national brands are increasingly important in commercial radio.

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"Nation Radio competes with and often beats other national brands in markets across the UK. Its roll out to the North East is an important moment in our development.”

The station continues to broadcast on 103.4 FM.

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