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North East England - switchover completes on Wednesday 26th September 2012

If you live in the North East of England - you will need to perform a 'first time' retune on your Freeview TV or set-top box when you get up for breakfast on the morning of Wednesday 26th September 2012.

If you live in the North East of England - you will need to per
published on UK Free TV
Starting just after midnight on Wednesday 26th September, the next switchover of 2012 will see the number of homes with digital-only terrestrial reception in the UK go up by 1,419,788 from 92.15% to 97.54%

Viewers in North East England who use the Bilsdale, Chatton, Pontop Pike or Fenham "full Freeview" transmitters (and about 43 smaller relay transmitters) will have no analogue television from Wednesday 26th September 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.

Do not expect ANY FREEVIEW television service from midnight until 6am - or a late as mid-afternoon on some relay transmitters (see below for timetable). This means you will not be able to record Freeview programmes overnight. --- but you can watch online here - Watch live UK TV channels and listen to live radio now.

Most people need only perform a "full retune" (or "factory reset" or "shipping condition") on their Freeview box or TV, but it would be impossible with five million homes covered by the transmitters, for no-one to have a problem.

Please note that the "Burnhope" transmitter will no longer be required for television other transmitters will provide coverage.

Coverage Maps

On these maps, the full-service six-multiplex transmitters are shown with the "red star" Freeview logo. The public service three-multiplex masts are shown with a brown indicator. The green areas on the maps, are the areas where the strongest signal is from the shown transmitter region, with the light blue showing overlap areas where signals from other regions are stronger.

From Wednesday 26th September 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.

You will be served by the Freeview HD service from Wednesday, 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?

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 12th September 2012 - you will have to do it again on Wednesday 26th September 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 with no Freeview at all will now have Freeview Light

If you had no Freeview service before, you will have the BBC channels digitally from Wednesday 12th September 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 12th September 2012 then you may need a new aerial.

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

Aislaby (3pm), Allenheads (noon), Alston (9am), Bainbridge (9am), Bellingham (noon), Berwick (3pm), Blaydon Burn (3pm), Byrness (noon), Castleton (9am), Catton Beacon (3pm), Durham (9am), Esh (noon), Eston Nab (3pm), Falstone (3pm), Felling (noon), Grinton Lodge (9am), Guisborough (9am), Haydon Bridge (noon), Hedleyhope (3pm), Humshaugh (9am), Ireshopeburn (noon), Kielder (3pm), Limber Hill (noon), Morpeth (9am), Newton (9am), Peterlee (noon), Ravenscar (noon), Romaldkirk (9am), Rookhope (3pm), Rosedale Abbey (3pm), Rothbury (9am), Seaham (9am), Shotleyfield (noon), Skinningrove (noon), Staithes (3pm), Sunderland (9am), Wall (9am), Weardale (9am), West Burton(noon), Whitaside (3pm), Whitby (9am), Wooler (noon) now need, from around from 9am (unless shown otherwise) on 26th September 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.

Overlap with other regions

Because of the location of the transmitters, some viewers will find that they can pick up the signal from other BBC and ITV 1 regional studios.

Those viewers with "Freeview HD" (or other so called D-Book 7) receivers will find they are presented with a menu to allow them to pick which BBC One region is shown on "button 1", and which ITV 1 regions appears as channel 3.

Viewers with older equipment may have to resort to doing a manual to get the correct signal for the desired transmitter.

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 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".

For more details, see: Digital Region Overlap

Help with Freeview, aerials?
Can I attach a Freeview digibox to a Combi TV/Video unit?1
My high gain aerial can't get all the Freeview channels I expected2
I can't get Freeview yet, when will it start in my area?3
Are there plans to extend the range of regional variations on Freeview?4
How can I Receive Freeview on two TVs using one box?5
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

Saturday, 15 September 2012
Dave Lindsay
12:06 AM

Lesley: I presume that this is a VCR that receives analogue signals only as you mention the loss of BBC Two whose analogue signal was switched off. In which case you should be aware that the analogue signals of BBC One, ITV1, Channel 4 and Channel 5 (if applicable) will be turned off on 26th September.

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Dave Lindsay's 5,724 posts Platinum Platinum GB
12:12 AM

I confess I am not sure if this is analogue or not. I can see BBC1, ITV, Channels 4 and 5. If it is analogue then I suppose I will lose all the channels on the 26th?

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Lesley's 3 posts GB
12:26 AM

Forgot to say it has a SmartLink feature so I can record Freeview though I have to be watching the channel or have the TV on standby.

link to this
Lesley's 3 posts GB
Sunday, 23 September 2012
Stuart Owens
11:45 PM Wrexham

At the top of the page, the pie chart shows this switchover will result in an increase of 3.4% of homes in the UK going digital, but the text alongside says: the next switchover of 2012 will see the number of homes with digital-only terrestrial reception in the UK go up by 1,419,788 from 92.15% to 97.54%. The pie chart also says '92.2% already switched to digital only'.

The maths do not add up. In the pie chart, An increase of 3.4% from 92.15%/92.2% would be 95.55%/95.6% whereas to get to the percentage amount quoted in the text as 97.54% the actual increase calculates out to 5.39% for 92.15% or 5.34% for 92.2%

So which is correct? The 3.4% in the pie chart or the 5.39% as calculated by subtracting 92.15 from 97.54?

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Stuart Owens's 156 posts Silver Silver GB
Stuart's: Freeview map terrain plot frequency data R&TI Service digitaluk trade DAB coverage
Monday, 24 September 2012
12:18 AM

Stuart Owens: The 3.4% was a typo, correct is 5.4%, as shown now. Apologies for the error, thanks for pointing it out.

I should have written some code for the pie charts ... they have all been annoying to do.

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Briantist's 38,784 posts Owner Owner GB
Thursday, 27 September 2012
7:46 AM

Re-tuned this morning, and the reception for BBC channels is dreadful! I have extra shopping channels with perfect reception, but BBC is just lines and twittering noises.

What was the point of all of this?

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Dorothy's 1 post GB
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