The Tories, under leader Edward Heath, won and swiftly introduced the Sound Broadcasting Act 1972, which allowed for the introduction of Independent Local Radio and created the newly renamed Independent Broadcasting Authority (IBA) from the Independent Television Authority.The Independent Broadcasting Authority advertised local radio licences in certain locations in the United Kingdom under the umbrella term of Independent Local Radio (ILR).Following the 1964–68 offshore radio boom, the Conservative Party promised in its 1970 general election manifesto that should it win, it would introduce local commercial radio in addition to the commercial television that had started in 1955.This was a result of lobbying from pressure groups including the Local Radio Association, who felt that commercial radio should be introduced following the launch of ITV over a decade before.In late 1970, Maule-ffinch's future father-in-law, Barclay Barclay-White became involved.
He also presented 4Music's Trending Live and children's channel Nickelodeon's Nick Kicks.
The IBA awarded Capital Radio the "London General Entertainment" service, while "London News" was awarded to the London Broadcasting Company, LBC.
IBA transmission tests commenced in January 1973 and Capital Radio went on air on 16 October 1973, eight days after LBC, using the following FM and AM frequencies: 95.8 MHz FM from the Croydon transmitter and 557 k Hz (539 m) MW from London Transport's Lots Road Power Station, Chelsea.
Immediately after going on air, Capital Radio suffered co-channel interference from Radio Veronica, a pirate radio station off the coast of the Netherlands.
Veronica began broadcasting in the 1960s and it was suggested that the allocation of 539 metres to ILR may have been an attempt to block reception of overseas broadcasts — a battle which preceded the launch of BBC Radio 1.