Freeview signal changes reach SE England


Viewers in parts of the south-east are being asked to retune their Freeview TVs and boxes following changes across the region's transmitter network.

Frequency changes have taken place as part of the Government-backed programme to move television services to make way for future 5G mobile services and follows an Ofcom decision in 2014 to reallocate TV frequencies in favour of low-frequency 5G - which will allow mobile network operators to expand their current 5G networks to more areas. The south-east is the latest region to undergo changes following similar events in other regions.

As a result, viewers who find they are missing channels are now being asked to retune to restore them.

SE Kent
In the south-east of Kent, including Dover, Margate and Ashford, the change follows a short dual transmission period, where BBC channels have been broadcasting on two frequencies since 22nd August to allow viewers to check to see if their TV aerials can still receive the services on the new frequencies. Additionally, a new TV transmitter site in Ashford has gone live, providing aerial installers and householders with an alternative source of Freeview signals, should the signal from Dover be unreliable after the changes. The Margate relay has been beefed up to provide a wider range of Freeview channels for viewers struggling to get all the channels in the coastal town.

Brighton and Hove
In the Brighton area, a number of changes have occured at the Whitehawk Hill transmitter, which means viewers will need to retune to restore services. Among the channels affected is the local TV channel Latest TV Brighton, which is now broadcasting on a new frequency.

West Sussex
Across West Sussex, some services broadcast from Midhurst have changed frequency, meaning unretuned TVs will be missing some services.

Reigate
In Reigate, there's no changes to existing services, but viewers in the area will be able to receive extra channels including London's local TV channel London Live, alongside additional channels such as Sony Movies Christmas and Sony Channel following a retune.

Ventnor
On the Isle of Wight, there have been changes at the Ventnor relay, forcing a small number of viewers to retune.

Help and assistance
To assist viewers with retuning, Freeview has issued a number of videos covering most of the UK's TV and set-top-box manufacturers. These can be accessed at https://www.freeview.co.uk/retuning

Freeview's advice line is available to assist viewers on freephone 0808 100 0288. Further information about the changes is also available at www.freeview.co.uk/tvchanges.

A small minority of viewers may require a new aerial as a result of the changes. Viewers who are having difficulties should contact the Freeview advice line first. Where a household does not also have access to satellite or cable TV services, a free home visit may be offered by the helpline, which may result in a new aerial being installed, funded in conjunction with the mobile network operators who are taking over the old TV frequencies.