This weekend a new scheme, Radio Amnesty, will allow the UK radio-owning public to trade in their old radios and trannies for a voucher off on bran new digital tuners.
Backed by prominent UK retailers Tesco, Comet, Argos, and John Lewis, the programme aims to collect and recycle old radios for donation to RadioFix. The non profit RadioFix is working to co-ordinate radio use in coincidence with adult and childhood education in South Africa.
The digital radio industry hopes that with the scheme it can persuade larger numbers of UK radio owners to go digital whilst donating to a charitable cause. Manufacturers behind the programme include Bush, MagicBox, Panasonic, Pure, Roberts, Sony, Proline, and Alba.
Discounts for consumers will depend on make and model of the new digital radio being purchased. Digital Radio UK, the firm promoting the event, said most discounts will be about 10 per cent off the retail value. Old radios that can be reconditioned will be sent to the charity for reuse, while redundant radios will be recycled.
Behind the charitable cause, the Radio Amnesty is an attempt to reduce the UKs reliance on FM radio. The move will aim to ensure that digital coverage can begin to match or rival that of FM. The heightened popularity, the digital radio industry, hopes will encourage local, regional, and national stations to move towards digital broadcasting. A similar scrappage scheme to Radio Amnesty was recommended in the House of Lords last month by the Communications Committee.