menuMENU    UK Free TV logo Archive (2002-)



Click to see updates

Almost five million London homes begin switchover this week with a retune

If you live inside the M25, or up to 15 miles outside the capital's orbital motorway, you will need to retune your Freeview TV or set-top box on Wednesday morning.

If you live inside the M25, or up to 15 miles outside the capit
published on UK Free TV

This week sees the first stage of the digital television switchover for 4,853,500 homes in Greater London.

From 6am Wednesday 4th April 2012, you must perform a "first time installation" retune (sometimes "Factory Reset" or "Shipping Condition") on your Freeview box or television set if you use the Crystal Palace, Hemel Hempstead, Reigate or Guildford full service Freeview transmitters.

This is because the old low power "multiplex 1" BBC service will be replaced by the high power BBCA multiplex on the old analogue BBC TWO frequency. Also, ITV 1 analogue will move to the BBC TWO analogue slot, except at Hemel Hempstead.

  • Crystal Palace (starts midnight, ends by 6am) - BBC TWO analogue closes on C33, ITV 1 analogue moves to C23 from C33, Multiplex 1 closes on C25-, Multiplex BBCA starts on C23.
  • Guildford (starts midnight, ends by 6am) - BBC TWO analogue closes on C46, ITV 1 analogue moves to C46 from C43, Multiplex 1 closes on C49-, Multiplex BBCA starts on C43.
  • Hemel Hempstead (starts midnight, ends by 6am) - BBC TWO analogue closes on C44, Multiplex 1 closes on C48+, Multiplex BBCA starts on C44.
  • Reigate (starts midnight, ends by 6am) - BBC TWO analogue closes on C63, ITV 1 analogue moves to C63 from C60, Multiplex 1 closes on C31, Multiplex BBCA starts on C60.

Because the Multiplex BBCA service carries some channels (BBC FOUR and BBC radio stations) that are also still being broadcast as part of the existing multiplex 2, after you retune, you will see these channels duplicated. This will be resolved when you do a full retune in a fortnight.

On Wednesday 4th April 2012 (at 6am unless otherwise specified) if you use the: Alexandra Palace (1pm), Assendon (noon), Biggin Hill, Bishops Stortford,Cane Hill, Caterham, Chepping Wycombe (9am), Chesham, Chingford (11am), Croydon (Old Town),Dorking (noon), East Grinstead (noon), Edmonton, Farningham (9am), Finchley (9am), Forest Row (9am),Gravesend, Great Missenden, Greenwich (4pm), Guildford, Hammersmith, Hampstead Heath, Hemel Hempstead Town (9am), Henley-on-Thames (9am), Hertford, High Wycombe, Hughenden, Kenley, Kensal Town, Lea Bridge (2pm), Marlow Bottom, Micklefield, Mickleham, New Addington (11am), New Barnet,Old Coulsdon (2pm), Orpington, Otford, Poplar (1pm), Skirmett (3pm), St Albans, Sutton, Walthamstow North, Welwyn, West Wycombe, Wonersh (9am), Wooburn (noon), Woolwich (9am), Worlds End relay transmitters you will be able to receive the BBC Freeview services (with the exception of HD) for the first time, and you will no longer be able to view BBC TWO on analogue.

You MAY find that old equipment will no longer work - see TVs and boxes that do not support the 8k-mode

Another common problem at switchover is the increase in signal will overload amplifiers and over-the-top aerial installations. If this is the case you will have to remove the booster or amplifier from the system, or perhaps fit an attenuator if you have no amplification. - see Freeview signals: too much of a good thing is bad for you.

On Wednesday 18th April 2012 will see the second stage of switchover, which provides the final Freeview configuration, including Freeview HD for all transmitters in this region.

On this date, you will need, once again, to do a "first time installation" as indicated above.

If you are over 75, you should already have been supplied new equipment by the Switchover Help Scheme.

Help with Freeview, aerials?
How do I get a test card with Freeview1
I would like to know if it is possible to receive UK terrestrial Freeview servic2
I have been told I would receive too much singal from my Freeview tansmitter as 3
Can my Freeview box receive more than one BBC and ITV region?4
Is it true that my 87 year old mother is entitled to a FREE upgrade when the ana5
In this section
Should the UK close down the TV networks to allow for more mobile broadband? 1
UK Digital switchover ends - Northern Ireland completes on 24th October 20122
The last day of analogue television in the UK - goodbye PAL3
2 days left of analogue television - goodbye teletext4
3 days of analogue to go - goodbye to NICAM 7285
Changes to Saorview frequencies and power levels, 24th October 20126

Wednesday, 4 April 2012
matthew richardson
12:40 AM

i've lost all the channels except channel 5

link to this comment
matthew richardson's 1 post GB flag
1:00 AM

matthew richardson: That might happen because that happened when the wrekin in the west midlands when bbc 2 as switched off.
Also are the channels got a blank screen or nothing at all

link to this comment
JORDAN C's 10 posts GB flag
Miles Hardy
11:28 AM

Mark Fletcher you were SPOT on - and what a dramatic ending it was! I wish I'd videoed it. Hope someone puts it on youtube. Incidentally there is a minor error. It should say "by the high power BBCA multiplex on the old analogue ITV1 frequency" (not BBC2). Sorry to be so picky but I'm directing total novices to this page and they're already struggling bless them!

link to this comment
Miles Hardy's 1 post GB flag
David Pinfold

11:37 AM

Picking up BBC A from Crystal Palace perfectly here in North Oxfordshire at 70 miles distance.

link to this comment
David Pinfold's 42 posts GB flag
David's: mapD's Freeview map terrainD's terrain plot wavesD's frequency data D's Freeview Detailed Coverage
Cliff O'Garro
8:38 PM

I have run a 1st stage re-tune.
i can only recieve bbc 4 and radio stations.
will i only receive these channels for the next fortnight.

link to this comment
Cliff O'Garro's 1 post GB flag
Dave Lindsay

8:43 PM

Cliff O'Garro: What's the make and model of your receiver? If you are only picking up these, then I wonder if it won't work after switchover.

Could you receive other channels before?

link to this comment
Dave Lindsay's 5,724 posts GB flag
Steve T
10:49 PM

Also receiving excellent signal on BBC A in Paddock Wood, Kent from Crystal Palace at 43 kilometers distance and with the signal coming in at nearly 90 degrees off line to the aerial.

The Digital UK coverage predictor shows CP, Tunbridge Wells, Bluebell Hill, Heathfield and Dover as being good reception after DSO, so it's going to be an interesting couple of months with retunes. As removing the masthead amplifier/splitter isn't going to be an option I think I'll need to invest in some attenuators!

link to this comment
Steve T's 3 posts GB flag
Thursday, 5 April 2012
Pedro dd

9:07 AM

I only used to receive Mux1 and the others for that matter on a whim and a prayer with my 40ft high stacked pair, now I can get with just about anything. Can't wait for the rest to power up.

link to this comment
Pedro dd's 101 posts GB flag
Mark T
7:06 PM

Does anyone know how much electricity will be saved after switchover is complete? Looking at Crystal Palace alone, it looks like ~4 Megawatts less of electricity will be used now everything is digital only.

This must amount to a huge saving, (cost and power) for the nation?

link to this comment
Mark T's 2 posts GB flag
7:23 PM

I've lost ITV 1 ITV 2 Channel 5 and many others despite following all the guidelines for both auto and manual re-tunes. I've spoken to Digital UK who told me to speak to Sony (my TV manufacturer) and carried the retuned as per the Sony guidelines without any luck.
HELP - what do I do now?

link to this comment
Joe's 2 posts GB flag
Select more comments
Page 2

Your comment please
Please post a question, answer or commentUK Free TV is here to help people. If you are rude or disrespectful all of your posts will be deleted and you will be banned.

Privacy policy: UK Free Privacy policy.