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Full Freeview on the Bluebell Hill (Medway, England) transmitter

first published this on - UK Free TV
sa_streetviewGoogle Streetviewsa_gmapsGoogle mapsa_bingBing mapsa_gearthGoogle Earthsa_gps51.324,0.520 or 51°19'25"N 0°31'13"Esa_postcodeME5 9RD


The symbol shows the location of the Bluebell Hill (Medway, England) transmitter which serves 200,000 homes. The bright green areas shown where the signal from this transmitter is strong, dark green areas are poorer signals. Those parts shown in yellow may have interference on the same frequency from other masts.

Are there any planned engineering works or unexpected transmitter faults on the Bluebell Hill (Medway, England) mast?

Bluebell Hill transmitter - Bluebell Hill transmitter: Possible effect on TV reception week commencing 04/12/2023 Pixelation or flickering on some or all channels Digital tick

Choose from three options: ■ List by multiplex ■ List by channel number ■ List by channel name

Which Freeview channels does the Bluebell Hill transmitter broadcast?

If you have any kind of Freeview fault, follow this Freeview reset procedure first.

Digital television services are broadcast on a multiplexes (or Mux) where many stations occupy a single broadcast frequency, as shown below.

 H max
C32 (562.0MHz)242mDTG-20,000W
Channel icons
1 BBC One (SD) South East, 2 BBC Two England, 9 BBC Four, 23 BBC Three, 201 CBBC, 202 CBeebies, 231 BBC News, 232 BBC Parliament, plus 16 others

 H max
C34 (578.0MHz)242mDTG-20,000W
Channel icons
3 ITV 1 (SD) (Meridian (East micro region)), 4 Channel 4 (SD) South ads, 5 Channel 5, 6 ITV 2, 10 ITV3, 13 E4, 14 Film4, 15 Channel 4 +1 South ads, 18 More4, 26 ITV4, 28 ITVBe, 30 E4 +1, 35 ITV1 +1 (Meridian south coast),

 H max
C45+ (666.2MHz)242mDTG-20,000W
Channel icons
46 5SELECT, 101 BBC One HD South East, 102 BBC Two HD England, 103 ITV 1 HD (ITV Meridian Southampton), 104 Channel 4 HD South ads, 105 Channel 5 HD, 106 BBC Four HD, 107 BBC Three HD, 204 CBBC HD, 205 CBeebies HD, plus 1 others

 H max
C40 (626.0MHz)242mDTG-820,000W
Channel icons
20 Drama, 21 5USA, 29 ITV2 +1, 32 5STAR, 33 5Action, 38 Channel 5 +1, 41 Legend, 42 GREAT! action, 57 Dave ja vu, 58 ITVBe +1, 59 ITV3 +1, 64 Blaze, 67 TRUE CRIME, 68 TRUE CRIME XTRA, 78 TCC, 81 Blaze +1, 89 ITV4 +1, 91 WildEarth, 209 Ketchup TV, 210 Ketchup Too, 211 YAAAS!, 267 Al Jazeera English, plus 35 others

 H max
C43+ (650.2MHz)245mDTG-820,000W
Channel icons
 Smithsonian Channel, 11 Sky Mix, 17 Really, 19 Dave, 31 E4 Extra, 36 Sky Arts, 40 Quest Red, 43 Food Network, 47 Film4 +1, 48 Challenge, 49 4seven, 60 Drama +1, 65 That's Christmas, 70 Quest +1, 74 Yesterday +1, 75 That's 90s, 233 Sky News, plus 11 others

 H max
C46 (674.0MHz)245mDTG-820,000W
Channel icons
 Quest Red +1,  Classic Hits, 12 Quest, 25 W, 27 Yesterday, 34 GREAT! movies, 39 DMAX, 44 HGTV, 52 GREAT! christmas, 56 That's TV (UK), 61 GREAT! movies extra, 63 GREAT! christmas mix, 71 That’s 60s, 73 HobbyMaker, 82 Talking Pictures TV, 83 Together TV, 84 PBS America, 235 Al Jazeera Eng, plus 20 others

DTG-8 64QAM 8K 3/4 27.1Mb/s DVB-T MPEG2
H/V: aerial position (horizontal or vertical)

Which BBC and ITV regional news can I watch from the Bluebell Hill transmitter?

regional news image
BBC South East Today 0.8m homes 3.2%
from Tunbridge Wells TN1 1QQ, 28km southwest (218°)
to BBC South East region - 45 masts.
regional news image
ITV Meridian News 0.7m homes 2.7%
from Maidstone ME14 5NZ, 5km south-southeast (155°)
to ITV Meridian (East) region - 36 masts.
All of lunch, weekend and 50% evening news is shared with all of Meridian plus Oxford

How will the Bluebell Hill (Medway, England) transmission frequencies change over time?

1984-971997-981998-20122012-1319 Jul 2018

tv_off Being removed from Freeview (for 5G use) after November 2020 / June 2022 - more
Table shows multiplexes names see this article;
green background for transmission frequencies
Notes: + and - denote 166kHz offset; aerial group are shown as A B C/D E K W T
waves denotes analogue; digital switchover was 13 Jun 12 and 27 Jun 12.

How do the old analogue and currrent digital signal levels compare?

Analogue 1-4 30kW
SDN, ARQA, ARQB, BBCA, D3+4, BBCB(-1.8dB) 20kW
com8(-7.8dB) 5kW
com7(-8.1dB) 4.7kW
Mux 1*, Mux B*, Mux C*, Mux D*(-10dB) 3kW
Mux 2*, Mux A*(-11.8dB) 2kW

Which companies have run the Channel 3 services in the Bluebell Hill transmitter area

Sep 1955-Jul 1968Associated-Rediffusion†
Sep 1955-Jul 1968Associated TeleVision◊
Jul 1968-Dec 1981Thames†
Jul 1968-Dec 1981London Weekend Television♦
Jan 1982-Dec 1992Television South (TVS)
Jan 1993-Feb 2004Meridian
Feb 2004-Dec 2014ITV plc
Feb 1983-Dec 1992TV-am•
Jan 1993-Sep 2010GMTV•
Sep 2010-Dec 2014ITV Daybreak•
• Breakfast ◊ Weekends ♦ Friday night and weekends † Weekdays only. Bluebell Hill was not an original Channel 3 VHF 405-line mast: the historical information shown is the details of the company responsible for the transmitter when it began transmitting Channel 3.

Saturday, 5 February 2022

3:31 PM

James halsey:

Sorry, didn't see your last before my last! Just happened to see your previous post and replied to that straight away. Because COM7 is an SFN, the transmitter information will be different and not identify a specific transmitter.
Unfortunately because there is no published list of Network IDs (that we've found) which identify transmitters, because Sittingbourne Stockers Hill also operates as an SFN, I doubt that the Network ID will identify that or Bluebell Hill.

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Chris.SE's 3,939 posts GB flag
Monday, 25 April 2022
Julian M
7:09 AM

For information TalkTV is broadcating on the Bluebell Hill ch40 mux.

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Julian M's 2 posts GB flag

2:14 PM

Julian M:

It's on the SDN multiplex at all transmitters that broadcast the COM muxes
For Bluebell Hill the correct UHF channels are C32, C34, C45, C40, C43, C46, C55, C21 for the multiplexes in the order BBCA/PSB1, D3&4/PSB2, BBCB HD/PSB3, SDN/COM4, ArqA/COM5, ArqB/COM6, COM7 & the Local multiplex.

See Channel listings for Industry Professionals | Freeview for which channels are carried on which multiplexes.
Don't forget COM7 closes at the end of June 2022 under the current licence. No announcements have been made about what will happen to channels on COM7.

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Chris.SE's 3,939 posts GB flag
Friday, 29 April 2022
mike mo
8:44 PM
West Malling

I keepgetting interference ,pixellation sometimes disappearance, from the bluebell transmitter for about the last week or so. ME19 5QP with signals of around 66% quality 100% and also on channel 55 sig 46 48% quality 100%

Anything I can do?

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mike mo's 2 posts GB flag
mike's: mapM's Freeview map terrainM's terrain plot wavesM's frequency data M's Freeview Detailed Coverage

10:18 PM

mike mo:

The Bluebell transmitter has been listed for Planned Engineering in recent weeks with the Possible effect on TV reception ""Pixelation or flickering on some or all channels" so this is likely what you are seeing. So if your reception is normally excellent, there is nothing for you to do, certainly don't retune as you may lose correct tuning.

Having said there is nothing to do, If your reception otherwise isn't normally perfect, I'm a little surprised that you are seeing a problem as you are predicted to get excellent reception of all multiplexes and you're only 7km from the transmitter. What sort of aerial are you using? It should be pointing at compass bearing 66 degrees (almost ENE) with its rods horizontal.
If you do have problems at other times it might be worth giving your aerial and downlead a checkout.

Also note, posts sometimes take an inordinate amount of time to appear on this site, so it's best to wait several minutes to check if you post appears even if you got a fatal error message!

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Chris.SE's 3,939 posts GB flag
Saturday, 30 April 2022
mike mo
8:10 AM

Yeah, fatal error misled me to think the post does not go through. The aerial is in the loft and was pointing slightly down about 5 degrees from the horizontal. I've got it now horizontal and it has improved the strength on ch55 by about 8-10%, which gives me the results I just posted yesterday.

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mike mo's 2 posts GB flag
Friday, 13 May 2022
Philip A Hadler
4:15 PM

Dear Sirs

I live in whitstable Kent. CT54HX. We cannot tx the Dover tx. So face the antenna to London/Blubell.

However, the auto tune always tunes low, ch 23 and up. So most the London tx.
My tv is a Sony 50x85j.

Any ideas how I can force it to use. Bluebell tx. The set up asks for Kent only.

Thank you.

Phil Hadler

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Philip A Hadler's 1 post US flag

4:25 PM

Philip A Hadler: Crystal Palace is predicted to be much stronger at your location than Bluebell Hill and both transmitters are in almost the exact same direction so it makes sense that your TV is preferring to tune to London region rather than Meridian. You could try manual tuning on UHF channels 32, 34 and 45 but you may find that the signal isn't strong enough to work reliably.

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StevensOnln1's 3,569 posts GB flag
Saturday, 14 May 2022

12:25 AM

Philip A Hadler:

For Bluebell Hill the full list of UHF channels are C32, C34, C45, C40, C43, C46, C55, C21 for the multiplexes in the order BBCA/PSB1, D3&4/PSB2, BBCB HD/PSB3, SDN/COM4, ArqA/COM5, ArqB/COM6, COM7 & the Local multiplex.

See Channel listings for Industry Professionals | Freeview for which channels are carried on which multiplexes.
Don't forget COM7 closes at the end of June 2022 under the current licence. No announcements have been made about what will happen to channels on COM7.

link to this comment
Chris.SE's 3,939 posts GB flag
Tuesday, 12 July 2022
5:57 AM

My freeview channels are still pixelating and Bluebell Hill is my only choice of transmitter. How long must I suffer this bad reception? How long will this work take as it seems to have been going on for months.

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Peter's 2 posts GB flag
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