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Switchover completes for non-coastal West Sussex

If you live in the Midhurst transmitter area (West Sussex, above the South Downs), you will need to take action on Wednesday morning as high power digital television services bring digital and high definition television to everyone.

If you live in the Midhurst transmitter area (West Sussex, abov
published on UK Free TV
Tonight, 14th March 2012, the next switchover of 2012 will see the number of homes with digital-only terrestrial reception in the UK goes up by 99,400 from 67.4% to 67.8%.

Viewers in the West Sussex, above the South Downs who use the Midhurst transmitter (and 2 relay transmitters) will have no analogue television from Wednesday 14th March 2012. Unless you use cable or satellite to watch television, if you don't use a Freeview box or set, your screen will be blank.

Most people need only perform a "full retune" on their Freeview box or TV, but it would be impossible with 99,400 homes covered by the transmitters, for no-one to have a problem.

From Wednesday 14th March 2012 you MUST have a digital television device to watch TV. If you do not have a digital receiver, from Wednesday will have a blank screen.

Do not expect a terrestrial television service from midnight until 6am - or a late as 9am on relay transmitters (see below for timetable).

You will be served by the Freeview HD service from today, but please see this six-point checklist to ensure you really are watching in high definition: Are you really watching free TV in high definition?

Low power on ArqA and ArqB Multiplex for some months

The ArqB multiplex will, until 25 April 2012, be restricted to 1,000W (full power will be 10,000W)

The ArqA multiplex will, until 20 June 2012 may have a reactive power restriction to 5,000W (full power will be 10,000W).

Switchover help scheme

If you are over 75, get (or could get) Disability Living Allowance, Attendance Allowance, Constant Attendance Allowance or mobility supplement; or have lived in a care home for six months or more; or are registered blind or partially sighted and need assistance, please see The Switchover Help Scheme.


Cable and satellite

Cable (Virgin Media) and satellite (Sky, Freesat, fSfS) viewers are not affected by the changes. Remember, however, that you may be using analogue TV to watch on a second or third set and it might need a Freeview box.

Existing "full" Freeview users

If you already use Freeview, and can receive all the channels now, check your TV or box is not listed here - TVs and boxes that do not support the 8k-mode. If it is, you will need a new Freeview box.

If you are not on the list, you should scan your box from around 6am.

When you now rescan, you MUST do a "first time installation" or "factory reset" scan (sometimes called "shipping state"), not a simple "add channels". Do the procedure you did on "national retune day", September 30th 2009, see Freeview Retune - list of manuals.

If you can't recall the procedure or find the manual, please see generic clear and rescan procedure.

If you scanned during the first phase of switchover on Wednesday 29th February 2012 - you will have to do it again on Wednesday 14th March 2012.

Using Freeview with Windows Vista

Please see Switch over and PC-based systems because you need some updates for your system to work.

Boosters and amplifiers

If you live close to the transmitter, you may have to disconnect any "boosters" from your aerial system. The new, more powerful digital signals may overload any amplifiers and result in no reception! When looking for them include a check for distribution amplifiers, loft boxes, set back amplifiers, bypass Amplifiers, hidden masthead amps in a loft space and any dodgy active splitters.

For full details, see: Freeview signals: too much of a good thing is bad for you.

Homes without Freeview now have Freeview Light

If you had no Freeview service before, you will have the BBC channels digitally from Wednesday 29th February 2012. This is a single multiplex of the BBC channels (radio, television and text) for most people.

However, if you were on the fringes of reception from one of the main Freeview transmitters, you will now get all the Freeview channels.

If you didn't get this limited Freeview service on Wednesday 29th February 2012 then you may need a new aerial.

If you are served by a public service (relay) transmitter, which are:

Haslemere (6am), Steyning (9am) now need, from around from 6am (unless shown otherwise) on 14th March 2012 to rescan, and you will get a second Multiplex with ITV 1, ITV 2, ITV 1 +1, Channel 4, Channel 5, Channel 4+1, E4 and More4.

And that's your lot if you have a standard Freeview receiver, see Freeview retune - poor public service transmitters.

You may wish to install Freesat for more channels, see Compare Freeview Light and Freesat TV.

Everyone who has digital-only terrestrial TV now has the ability to receive Freeview HD, see below.

Digital regional overlap

The old analogue TV signals provided lots of nations and regions for the public service channels, and these have large areas of overlap.

The old low power digital TV signals were at very low levels and reception of signals from more than one transmitter was a rare event.

All Freeview boxes automatically scan the available broadcast frequencies looking for channels, and they do this from C21 to C69. Older Freeview boxes will, if a duplicate version of a channel is found whilst scanning, such as another BBC One region, placed it in the 800-899 channel range.

Some of the latest Freeview boxes will pick the strongest signals for the "primary" number positions, and some will detect the different regions providing a choice when you perform a "scan for channels".

The 800-899 is easy to access by pressing CH- from 1, and in most programme guides is just a single scroll up.

For more details, see: Digital Region Overlap

Freeview HD

Freeview HD will start on Wednesday 14th March 2012 from Midhurst and all 2 relay transmitters. You will need a Freeview HD - DVB-T2 receiver to watch the channels. An HD "Ready" TV set with Freeview is not enough.

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Friday, 16 March 2012

11:42 AM

Mike Tidy: It is possible that weak signals from Rowridge and/or Hannington are detected during the scan and channels stored which are not strong enough to view. After doing the reset procedure, start the scan with the aerial unplugged. Plug it back in about C48 so that only Midhurst frequencies are scanned.

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KMJ,Derby's 1,811 posts GB flag
Mike Tidy
2:54 PM

Briantist: Many thanks for your swift reply. After one or two false starts I eventually acquired 'The Channel List'. I found the list to be more than a little cryptic, being numbered 800, 801 ... 819, followed by text not easily decipherable - for an old guy like me! Nevertheless I followed the procedure of selecting a channel then tried to switch to that channel. No matter which channel I try, I get "no signal". Please help me.

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Mike Tidy's 3 posts GB flag
Mike's: mapM's Freeview map terrainM's terrain plot wavesM's frequency data M's Freeview Detailed Coverage
Mike Tidy
3:38 PM

KMJ,Derby: Many thanks for your post. The information contained made complete sense to me. I did, however, try Brian's procedure first; that has gotten me a channel list, albeit I can't receive any of the channels on it. (Please see my response to Brian). I don't want to loose that list since it represents the only progress for several days hard work, and getting the list wasn't straight forward. I'm now what you youngsters might call "stuxed". Requiring use of two pairs of glasses and a lot of back bending, I'm sure you will appreciate, this is not easy for the 'old folks'. There does not appear to be a 'clear the channel list' on my (digi-box) remote. Under the circumstances, this would be a useful function to have. My thanks again...

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Mike Tidy's 3 posts GB flag
Mike's: mapM's Freeview map terrainM's terrain plot wavesM's frequency data M's Freeview Detailed Coverage
Saturday, 17 March 2012
Mark Agius

3:23 PM
Haywards Heath


Haywards Heath was in East Sussex until the 1970's but is now in West Sussex.
HH goes digital in a few months so most but not all West Sussex north of the Downs has Freeview.
But I'll let you off as we believe we live in Mid-Sussex.

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Mark Agius's 373 posts GB flag
Mark's: mapM's Freeview map terrainM's terrain plot wavesM's frequency data M's Freeview Detailed Coverage
Monday, 2 April 2012
9:37 AM

I live in steyning and get london news, does this mean i wont get freeview until crystal palace switches. The aireal has been changed in the last six months, but dont get tv from steyning. my post code is bn443rh. what date change over for me please. ta

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gary's 1 post GB flag
gary's: mapG's Freeview map terrainG's terrain plot wavesG's frequency data G's Freeview Detailed Coverage
Dave Lindsay

10:24 AM

gary: The switchover dates for Crystal Palace are 4th April (BBC standard definition goes to full power) and 18th April (the other multiplexes follow).

According to the predictor, Heathfield is your best bet (after the limited channels from Steyning) and will also give you Meridian regional programming, but that will only be available to you when it switches over on 13th June.

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Dave Lindsay's 5,724 posts GB flag
Monday, 9 April 2012

6:13 PM

Nedbod: ITV 1 is called "Meridian" in this region - see Latest Meridian News - ITV News ...

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Briantist's 38,899 posts GB flag
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