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Full Freeview on the Sandy Heath (Central Bedfordshire, England) transmitter

first published this on - UK Free TV
sa_streetviewGoogle Streetviewsa_gmapsGoogle mapsa_bingBing mapsa_gearthGoogle Earthsa_gps52.130,-0.242 or 52°7'47"N 0°14'33"Wsa_postcodeSG19 2NH


The symbol shows the location of the Sandy Heath (Central Bedfordshire, England) transmitter which serves 920,000 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 Sandy Heath (Central Bedfordshire, England) mast?

Sandy Heath transmitter - Sandy Heath transmitter: Possible effect on TV reception week commencing 19/02/2024 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 Sandy Heath 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
C27 (522.0MHz)291mDTG-180,000W
Channel icons
1 BBC One (SD) Cambridge, 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
C24 (498.0MHz)291mDTG-180,000W
Channel icons
3 ITV 1 (SD) (Anglia (West 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 (Anglia east),

 H max
C21+ (474.2MHz)291mDTG-180,000W
Channel icons
46 5SELECT, 101 BBC One HD Cambridge, 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 -0.2dB
C33 (570.0MHz)291mDTG-8170,000W
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, 83 Together TV, 89 ITV4 +1, 91 WildEarth, 209 Ketchup TV, 210 Ketchup Too, 211 YAAAS!, 267 Al Jazeera English, plus 30 others

 H -0.2dB
C36 (594.0MHz)289mDTG-8170,000W
Channel icons
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 TV 2, 70 Quest +1, 74 Yesterday +1, 75 That's 90s, 233 Sky News, plus 11 others

 H -0.2dB
C48 (690.0MHz)289mDTG-8170,000W
Channel icons
12 Quest, 25 W, 27 Yesterday, 34 GREAT! movies, 39 DMAX, 44 HGTV, 52 GREAT! romance, 56 That's TV (UK), 61 GREAT! movies extra, 63 GREAT! romance mix, 71 That’s 60s, 73 HobbyMaker, 82 Talking Pictures TV, 84 PBS America, 235 Al Jazeera Eng, plus 18 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 Sandy Heath transmitter?

regional news image
BBC Look East (West) 1.0m homes 3.7%
from Cambridge CB4 0WZ, 29km east-northeast (65°)
to BBC Cambridge region - 4 masts.
70% of BBC East (East) and BBC East (West) is shared output
regional news image
ITV Anglia News 1.0m homes 3.7%
from Norwich NR1 3JG, 119km east-northeast (60°)
to ITV Anglia (West) region - 5 masts.
All of lunch, weekend and 80% evening news is shared with Anglia (East)

How will the Sandy Heath (Central Bedfordshire, England) transmission frequencies change over time?

1965-80s1984-971997-981998-20112011-1312 Feb 2020

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 30 Mar 11 and 13 Apr 11.

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

Analogue 1-4 1000kW
BBCA, D3+4, BBCB(-7.4dB) 180kW
SDN, ARQA, ARQB(-7.7dB) 170kW
com7(-13dB) 49.6kW
com8(-13.1dB) 49.1kW
Mux 1*, Mux 2*, Mux A*, Mux B*, Mux C*, Mux D*(-17dB) 20kW
Analogue 5(-20dB) 10kW

Which companies have run the Channel 3 services in the Sandy Heath transmitter area

Oct 1959-Feb 2004Anglia Television
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.

Sunday, 29 December 2019
8:49 PM

I believe there are no problems with the transmitter - like I say it's the weather causing interference.

Once we get lower pressure it will sort itself out - there is nothing anybody can do about this.

Why not stream TV on iPlayer until the weather resolves.

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Mike's 4 posts GB flag
Patrick Dent
10:40 PM

Same problem with Sandy Heath !

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Patrick Dent's 1 post GB flag
10:54 PM

Your website appears to be inconsistent, showing SDN on channel 51 in one table but showing SDN having been discontinued in 2018 in another table, would you please check this? In the 17 Jul 2018 column, SDN is not listed at all. I don't imagine SDN has stopped (or plans to stop) broadcasting from Sandy Heath, so would you please clarify this?

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Andy's 1 post GB flag
Paul Branson
10:55 PM

It seems most of Ely area lost signal if this is weather maybe we need a new transmitter for the Ely region

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Paul Branson's 1 post GB flag
Monday, 30 December 2019

1:00 AM

Paul Branson:

There are unusually high levels of "Tropospheric propagation" at present, often associated with High Pressure weather systems.
These levels of propagation are unusual at this time of year - they cause signals from more distant transmitters to travel a lot further than normal. It currently affecting different parts of the country by varying degrees and signals can change by the second or remain stable for much longer periods.
In the old "analogue" days there was a lot of talk about "continental" interference often in the summer months, but the interference can come from transmitters anywhere in the UK or Europe and even further afield. At the moment some people are getting DAB radio from the Netherlands and FM Radio from France as well as the interference to DTV.

As already posted by Mike, it will "sort itself out" in due course, but it is predicted to continue for a couple more days, and you are advise NOT to retune as you will likely lose the correct tuning that you had. The "propagation" can be very frequency dependent, and as noted by Barry Hardwick it only affected one frequency for him, but it can/will be different for others.

Andy Dodds: this has nothing to do with 5G, it's as I've posted above. However it's quite understandable that you haven't appreciated this and people like chris ashton, Carole, Paul Ellam, Josephine Evans, Patrick Dent and other that have posted wonder what is going on and think there is a transmitter problem. People will however have noticed the unusually mild weather which the Met office is referring to as a "Foehn effect" but it's not helpful that it seems none of the major broadcasters are making any reference to the interference being caused to TV and Radio reception!

As already mentioned, you are advised not to retune as you will probably lose correct tuning. As noted by another Andy, the UHF channel listing here for Sandy Heath (and elsewhere & for many other transmitters) is incorrect. There are over 1100+ transmitters in the UK and the site owner here has been unable to keep up with all the 700MHz clearance changes.

For those that have retuned and lost correct tuning, you will have to try again and it could be hit and miss whilst the unusual propagation continues. If you are able to do a manual tune for the correct UHF channels, you may still receive interference or the wrong programmes. For Sandy Heath the correct UHF channels are at present as follows -
C27, C24, C21, C51, C36, C48, C55, C56 & C35 for the multiplexes PSB1/BBCA, PSB2/D3&4, PSB3/BBCB HD, SDN, ArqA, ArqB, COM7 HD, COM8 HD and the Local Cambridge mux., reception of the Local Multiplex will be very dependent on location. Also note there is a retune event due on the 12th Feb.2020.

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Chris.SE's 4,076 posts GB flag

4:31 AM

Steve Wilson:

Leaving aside the Tropospheric propagation of the last couple of days, you are normally predicted to get good reception of all multiplexes except COMs 7&8 which could be variable. If the trees are not close and not especially tall they may not have a significant effect. Your aerial should have the rods horizontal and pointing at a bearing of 109 degrees (~ marginally E of ESE).
You are correct, ideally the filter should be between the aerial and the amplifier, as you have several mobile phone masts close by, it may be an idea to get it repositioned but it needs to be a correct external filter. If you are not noticing any difference between your reception with or without it in circuit, then I'd check for other problems first.

Check all your coax plugs, connections, flyleads etc, unplug connectors check for corrosion or other problems and reconnect them. Flyleads are a common problem, try swapping/changing them. See what signal strengths and quality you are getting for the multiplexes shown in your TV's tuning section. Also check that your downlead looks undamaged (especially if it is old) and that your aerial seems intact and pointing in the correct direction.
Problematic connections, water ingress etc. can seem to affect reception of just an individual or several multiplexes.

Check you are tuned correctly and see what it's like when the propagation has subsided.

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Chris.SE's 4,076 posts GB flag
Chris.SE's: mapC's Freeview map terrainC's terrain plot wavesC's frequency data C's Freeview Detailed Coverage
Jason Drake
9:10 AM

Hi,, I Live in postcode area PE1 5XD and today we have no signal on all BBC and ITV channels. It was the same yesterday afternoon into the early evening. My sister in law is having the same problem. This was happening intermittently last summer and I put it down to atmospherics but this is now at the point where it is wholly unacceptable. Please can you advise as we have tried re tuning and it does not help at all?

Regards J A Drake

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Jason Drake's 1 post GB flag
Jason's: mapJ's Freeview map terrainJ's terrain plot wavesJ's frequency data J's Freeview Detailed Coverage
10:33 AM

My 82 year old mother lost her signal again yesterday, ( 30th Dec) - still not back on today.She relies on her T.V, for company, as lives alone. She is soooo upset, as this does keep happening. Today she goes for a operation, which she is scared, tv, not working has not helped her state of mind. NN172rw.

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Rosemary's 1 post GB flag
Alan Carter
12:01 PM

I live in the PE15 Doddington postcode area. Yesterday and again today, reception on all BBC channels is poor, from breaking up to nothing at all. Unwatchable! My neighbour, some 400 metres away is experiencing the same issue, with additional channels affected. Surely, in the technical age we now live, something can be done to combat the occurrence of high pressure weather causing this disruption to service? And, why does it only affect certain channels?

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Alan Carter's 1 post GB flag
Carol Richards
12:08 PM

As of yesterday 29/12 I have an intermittent fault on all tv channels on freeeview. I receive my signal via an aerial. It picture keeps coming off and on. Checked with my nearest Neighborough who is a 1/4 mile away and they are having the same problem. Also my sister who lives in Kettering is having experiencing similar problems. I have checked for problems on the sandy heath transmitter and they say there are none but because this is effecting people in quire a large area I fail to see what else it can be.
I have retuned my tv. Please can u help

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Carol Richards's 1 post GB flag
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