Picture: Beat’s Niall Power and Gabrielle Cummins.

Regional radio station Beat 102-103 enjoyed double success at this year’s highly coveted IMRO Radio Awards.

Following on from his gold and silver success in the “Best Radio DJ in Ireland” category, in 2018 and 2019 respectively, David Hammond once again scooped gold this year.

Beat’s Head of Station Sound Niall Power paid tribute to David who presents Beat at Work weekdays from 12.45 to 4pm on Beat 102-103.  “David puts a huge amount of work into devising creative content that grabs the listener’s attention.  As a music DJ, you only have seconds to make an impact. David regularly uses this time well to wrap his words around the music he plays and the result, as we’ve seen tonight, is stand out radio!  We’re very proud of the success David has deservedly secured consistently over the last three years.”

One of the most competitive categories is “On-air competition/promotion”. Beat has a strong track record in this much coveted section at the annual radio awards and 2020 saw the market leading station build on its past success.  A quirky concept based around the idea that Leap day happens just once every four years so why not do something extraordinary. Gold award winning “Leap of Faith” was a promotion that encouraged listeners to take part without knowing what the prize was going to be at the end!  A nail-biting competition that culminated in two finalists battling it out in a water based obstacle course at Dunmore East on a freezing cold Leap day, February 29th 2020.  The winner Kellie O’Neill then discovered that the prize she had been fighting for, involved a leap across three countries in three days to see three different artists.  Expertly chaperoned by Beat drivetime presenter Darren Rice and her best mate Jenny, Kellie got to experience a trip of a lifetime that included seeing a 90s tribute act at the 3 Arena in Dublin, Tones & I in London and got to personally meet Dermot Kennedy in NYC.


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We’ve won gold! Leap Of Faith has won the top gong in the On Air Promotion Catagory at tonight’s radio IMRO Awards! 🥳🥳

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Speaking about the Leap of Faith win, Solutions Co-Ordinator Kolyn Ryan-Byrne was thrilled.

“It was such a huge team effort, keeping all of the elements a secret was so hard, but it all paid off in the end.

“We got the South-East talking and that’s what we wanted to do.”

CEO of Beat 102-103 Gabrielle Cummins said “Beat prides itself on creating multiplatform content that gets people engaged with us and brings excitement to our 165,000 weekly listeners and over half a million social followers.

“Leap of faith was actually a gem of an idea that emerged from a late-night conversation at the IMRO radio awards last year so how apt that it’s won! I’m so proud of the project team who took the original idea and made it into this incredible promotion that is now a national gold radio award winner”.

The Beat Boss went on to say that “2020 has been such a strange year for everyone.  Unquestionably, radio has played a vital role in keeping people informed, entertained and consistently provides that all important company for so many people, trying to get through the pandemic. All of us at Beat have been truly humbled by the reaction from our much-valued listeners to the content we’ve been bringing to them over the last few months. I think it’s a fitting tribute to the hard-working team at Beat that the station has been honoured with double gold success.”

This year, the usual gala dinner was transported into the virtual world with a Livestream ceremony hosted by Dermot Whelan. Hundreds of radio people from all over the island of Ireland tuned in from the comfort and safety of their homes to watch the winners be revealed.

While the annual get together could not take place in Kilkenny this year, the evening was a resounding success with special performances from some of Ireland’s top music artists along with video messages from famous Irish faces wishing everyone in radio the very best.

2020 has been the year where radio shone at its brightest. Amidst the Pandemic, radio has kept us company, informed and educated us. Those familiar voices have kept many working from home or doing long shifts at the front line entertained and up to date.

The Livestream started on a poignant note with memories of the radio family that left us in the last year. A video played with faces from local radio and those behind the scenes along with the well-known greats who were IMRO Radio Awards Hall of Fame recipients of the past; Gay Byrne, Marian Finucane and Larry Gogan.

Chair of the IMRO Radio Awards, Chris Doyle, said “This year has been a challenge in lots of ways, the committee was faced with the decision to abandon the awards for 2020 or to host this virtual ceremony and I am delighted we decided to go ahead.  The radio industry has delivered excellent broadcasting this year providing trusted news and information as well as entertainment and company to listeners.  While many rightly stayed at home to flatten the curve, the essential service of radio went above and beyond going the extra mile which is testament to the commitment of all those involved in the industry.”

Eleanor McEvoy, Chair of main sponsors IMRO said “For one night every year, the IMRO Radio Awards break down our geographical barriers and unite all Irish radio stations and bring them together. IMRO and I would like to congratulate each and every one of this year’s winners. The quality, distinction, passion, care and attention that they have put into their work has made them stand out from the rest and ensure that the highest calibre of radio is broadcast into our lives every day”

Chief Executive of sponsors Broadcasting Authority of Ireland gave this message “The BAI is proud to continue its support of the annual IMRO Radio Awards and I would very much like to congratulate the winners and nominees in each category tonight. All are reflective of the array of talent working in the radio sector today. In a year which has proven particularly challenging for the industry due to the COVID pandemic, paying tribute to the continued delivery of high quality and diverse programming for listeners is more important than ever. The ongoing commitment of IMRO to deliver the awards night, albeit in a new format, and celebrate the creativity and innovation across the sector is commendable. The BAI would like to extend its congratulations to all involved.

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