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Last Updated: Thursday, 6 May, 2004, 15:38 GMT 16:38 UK
Moyles show is toast of Radio 1
Chris Moyles
Moyles took over the show in January
Chris Moyles' BBC Radio 1 breakfast show has attracted nearly 700,000 new listeners during the first three months of the year.

Moyles, who replaced previous host Sara Cox in January, has taken the audience from 6.50 million to 7.18 million.

In the 15+ age group, Moyles has attracted 5.93 million listeners, up from 5.52 million, according to Rajar, the radio industry's ratings body.

The DJ said he was "over-the-moon delighted" with the upsurge in ratings.

"I'm quite pleased with the figures, I'd be lying if I said I wasn't bothered, I'm extremely bothered," he said.

The host is on a two-week holiday.

Record ratings

The BBC said it had taken 52.6% of the total radio audience in the UK, with the biggest rises, compared with the last three months of 2003, for music and arts station Radio 3, and the news and sport network Radio Five Live.

Radio Five Live posted ratings of 6.52 million, which the BBC said it was second only to its ratings during the 2002 World Cup.

Radio 3 had a record increase of 2.29 million, up on last quarter's 2.19 million,.

The BBC said its increase had come from its much bigger programme of live music.

Radio 2, the nation's highest-rating station, saw its audience slip from 13.15 million last quarter to 12.9 million.

The Mary Whitehouse Experience team in 1991
The Mary Whitehouse Experience's radio debut was recently aired on BBC7

Radio 4 also recorded a drop, from 9.51 million to 9.37 million, and nearly 700,000 less than a similar time last year, during the war in Iraq.

The pick of the BBC's digital stations was BBC7, which broadcasts comedy and drama. It saw its audience jump from 267,000 to 398,000.

The music-based 6 Music rose from 155,000 to 187,000, while the urban station 1Xtra had a smaller rise from 248,000 to 263,000.

In London, radio's most competitive market, Capital FM recorded a reach of 2.4 million, more than 100,000 more than the last quarter, and also up on the previous year.

The figures cover the final shows of breakfast presenter Chris Tarrant - station bosses will have to wait three months to find out how his replacement Johnny Vaughan is doing.

Classic FM has increased its audience by over 300,000 to 6.54 million.


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