Capital South Wales (formerly Red Dragon) is a regional radio station owned by Communicorp and operated by Global Radio as part of the Capital radio network. It broadcasts to Cardiff, Newport and the surrounding areas – from the Red Dragon Centre in Cardiff Bay.
The station originally took to the air in Cardiff only. Known as CBC (Cardiff Broadcasting Company), the station launched in April 1980 on 221 metres medium wave (1359 kHz AM) and 96.0 VHF. Following the closure of neighbouring Gwent Broadcasting (GB Radio) in April 1985 CBC began relaying its service as a temporary measure to southern Gwent on 104 VHF and 230 metres medium wave (1305 kHz). This became permanent when CBC re-launched as Red Dragon Radio on 14 October 1985. Initially there were separate drivetime shows for Glamorgan and Gwent but these were dropped for a single service by the early nineties.
On 3 January 2011 the station was rebranded from Red Dragon to 97.4 & 103.2 Capital as part of a merger of owners Global Radio's Hit Music and Galaxy networks to form Capital. On 6 February 2014, Global Radio announced it would be selling Capital South Wales to Communicorp. Capital's network programming and brand name are retained under a contract. Global's Heart Wales station shares facilities at the Capital studios in Cardiff Bay.
Initially, CBC broadcast to Cardiff on 96.0 MHz and Newport on 104.0 MHz FM. These frequencies were switched to 103.2 MHz and 97.4 MHz respectively in 1987 following a national reorganisation of UK FM frequencies.
The 103.2 MHz signal, which is the stronger of the two, comes from the transmitter at Wenallt near Cardiff, with the 97.4 MHz signal being transmitted from Christchurch in Newport. The signals reach as far out as the South Wales Valleys to the north and part of Bridgend to the west.
Simulcasting on 1305 & 1359 kHz AM ended in 1990 with the launch of Touch AM. Those frequencies are now used by the Smooth Radio network.
Capital South Wales also broadcasts on the NOW Cardiff & Newport DAB multiplex. The station can also be heard live via its website or on its iPhone/Android application. Other stations owned by Global Radio can also be streamed. Both require a WiFi, 3G, EDGE or GPRS connection.
Local programming is produced and broadcast from Capital's Cardiff Bay studios from 6-10am and 4-7pm on weekdays and 12-4pm at weekends. All networked programming originates from Global Radio's London headquarters, including the syndicated Vodafone Big Top 40 on Sunday afternoons.
The station's local presenters are Matt Lissack, Polly James and Geraint Hardy (Capital Breakfast), Michelle Owen (weekday drivetime), Josh Andrews (Saturday afternoons) and Kally Davies (Sunday afternoons).
Capital South Wales broadcasts hourly local news updates from 6am-7pm on weekdays and 6am-12pm at weekends with headlines on the half-hour during Capital Breakfast on weekdays.
The bulletins are produced for Communicorp by Global Radio's Cardiff Bay newsroom, which also produces bulletins for Heart Wales, Heart North Wales and Smooth Wales.