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Full Freeview on the Winter Hill (Bolton, England) transmitter

first published this on - UK Free TV
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The symbol shows the location of the Winter Hill (Bolton, England) transmitter which serves 2,690,000 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.

This transmitter has no current reported problems

The BBC and Digital UK report there are no faults or engineering work on the Winter Hill (Bolton, England) transmitter.

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

Which Freeview channels does the Winter 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)726mDTG-3100,000W
Channel icons
1 BBC One (SD) North West, 2 BBC Two England, 9 BBC Four, 201 CBBC, 202 CBeebies, 231 BBC News, 232 BBC Parliament, 250 BBC Red Button, plus 16 others

 H max
C34 (578.0MHz)726mDTG-3100,000W
Channel icons
3 ITV (SD) (Granada), 4 Channel 4 (SD) North ads, 5 Channel 5 (SD), 6 ITV 2, 10 ITV3, 13 E4, 14 Film4, 15 Channel 4 +1 North ads, 18 More4, 24 ITV4, 33 ITV +1 (Granada),

 H max
C35- (585.8MHz)726mDTG-6100,000W
Channel icons
74 Shopping Quarter , 101 BBC One HD (England no regional news), 102 BBC Two HD (England), 103 ITV HD (ITV Granada), 104 Channel 4 HD North ads, 105 Channel 5 HD, 204 CBBC HD, plus 1 others

 H max
C29 (538.0MHz)726mDTG-8100,000W
Channel icons
12 Quest, 20 Drama, 21 5USA, 27 ITV2 +1, 30 5STAR, 31 Paramount Network, 34 ITV3 +1, 40 Sony Movies Action, 44 Channel 5 +1, 54 5SELECT, 58 ITVBe +1, 59 ITV4 +1, 63 Blaze, 66 CBS Reality, 70 Horror Channel, 77 TCC, 80 Blaze +1, 203 CITV, 211 Ketchup TV, plus 17 others

 H max
C31 (554.0MHz)726mDTG-8100,000W
Channel icons
11 pick, 17 Really, 19 Dave, 23 CCXTV, 28 E4 +1, 29 4Music, 38 Quest Red, 41 Food Network, 45 Film4 +1, 46 Challenge, 47 4seven, 57 Smithsonian Channel, 75 Yesterday +1, 76 Quest +1, 78 Now 70s, 88 Together TV, 233 Sky News, plus 8 others

 H max
C37 (602.0MHz)726mDTG-8100,000W
Channel icons
25 Yesterday, 32 Sony Movies, 37 DMAX, 39 CBS Justice, 42 HGTV, 67 CBS Drama, 79 Dave ja vu, 81 Talking Pictures TV, 91 PBS America, 234 RT, 235 Aljazeera English, plus 18 others

 H -20dB
C56 (754.0MHz)572mDTG-121,000W
Channel icons
from 1st October 2014: 7 That's Manchester,

 H -17dB
C56 (754.0MHz)572mDTG-122,000W
Channel icons
from 30th June 2014: 7 Bay TV Liverpool,

 H -20dB
C56 (754.0MHz)572mDTG-121,000W
Channel icons
from 1st October 2014: 7 That's Lancashire,

 H -5.9dB
C55 (746.0MHz)726mDTG-625,700W
Channel icons
64 FreeSports, 72 Quest Red +1, 83 NOW 80s, 86 More4 +1, 89 Together TV +1, 92 Pick +1, 93 PBS America +1, 96 Forces TV, 106 BBC Four HD, 107 BBC News HD, 113 RT HD, 114 Quest HD, 209 CBeebies HD, plus 2 others

 H -6.5dB
C31 (554.0MHz)726mDTG-622,600W
Channel icons

 H -20dB
C57 (762.0MHz)572mDTG-21,000W
Channel icons
 Spotlight TV, 62 Sony Movies Classic +1, 82 Clubland TV, 84 Now 90s, 208 POP MAX,

DTG-3 64QAM 8K 2/3 24.1Mb/s DVB-T MPEG2
DTG-6 256QAM 32KE 2/3 40.2Mb/s DVB-T2 MPEG4
DTG-8 64QAM 8K 3/4 27.1Mb/s DVB-T MPEG2
DTG-12 QSPK 8K 3/4 8.0Mb/s DVB-T MPEG2
DTG-2 16QAM 2K 3/4 18.1Mb/s DVB-T MPEG2
H/V: aerial position (horizontal or vertical)

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

regional news image
BBC North West Tonight 3.1m homes 11.8%
from Salford M50 2QH, 22km southeast (139°)
to BBC North West region - 92 masts.
regional news image
ITV Granada Reports 3.1m homes 11.6%
from Salford M50 2EQ, 22km southeast (139°)
to ITV Granada region - 80 masts.

How will the Winter Hill (Bolton, England) transmission frequencies change over time?

1956-80s1984-971997-981998-20092009-132013-182013-1720 Feb 2020
C49tv_off ArqAArqA
C50tv_off BBCABBCA

tv_off Being removed from Freeview (for 5G use) after November 2020 - 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 4 Nov 09 and 2 Dec 09.

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

Analogue 1-4 500kW
SDN, ARQA, ARQB, BBCA, D3+4, BBCB(-7dB) 100kW
com7(-12.9dB) 25.7kW
com8(-13.4dB) 22.6kW
Analogue 5(-16dB) 12.5kW
Mux 1*, Mux 2*, Mux A*, Mux B*, Mux C*, Mux D*(-17dB) 10kW
LL(-24dB) 2kW
GIM, LM, LPR(-27dB) 1000W

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

May 1956-Jul 1968Granada Television†
May 1956-Jul 1968Associated British Corporation◊
Jul 1968-Feb 2004Granada 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.

Thursday, 5 December 2019

1:47 AM

Digital UK (or is it just Freeview now) have some ZERO WIDTH SPACES on offer this week, courtesy of BBC 6 Music!

A short-form error summary follows:

Invalid Character Codes in the EIT off North West multiplex BBC A. Date: 2019/12/05 00:59:54

It has become apparent through observation that invalid bytes in the Freeview EIT text strings are the low-order bytes of the Unicode General Punctuation Block:

Of course only bytes less than 0x20 qualify as invalid codes in the context of EIT text strings.

Since about April 2018, the following invalid codes have been found in the Freeview EIT text items:

0x01, substitute: {0x01} -> Unicode Character: "EM QUAD" (U + 2001)
0x08, substitute: { } -> Unicode Character: "PUNCTUATION SPACE" (U + 2008)
0x0B, substitute: {} -> Unicode Character: "ZERO WIDTH SPACE" (U + 200B)
0x10, substitute: {-} -> Unicode Character: "HYPHEN" (U + 2010)
0x13, substitute: {--} -> Unicode Character: "EN DASH" (U + 2013)
0x14, substitute: {---} -> Unicode Character: "EM DASH" (U + 2014)
0x18, substitute: {L'} -> Unicode Character: "LEFT SINGLE QUOTATION MARK" (U + 2018)
0x19, substitute: {R'} -> Unicode Character: "RIGHT SINGLE QUOTATION MARK" (U + 2019)
0x1C, substitute: {L''} -> Unicode Character: "LEFT DOUBLE QUOTATION MARK" (U + 201C)
0x1D, substitute: {R''} -> Unicode Character: "RIGHT DOUBLE QUOTATION MARK" (U + 201D)

There are 976 invalid codes in the current EIT:
invalid code, count, percentage
0x08, 24, 2.46%
0x0B, 2, 0.20%
0x13, 4, 0.41%
0x18, 13, 1.33%
0x19, 887, 90.88%
0x1C, 23, 2.36%
0x1D, 23, 2.36%

There are 777 events with invalid codes in the current EIT.

The Culprits:
service_name, number of events containing errors

BBC 6 Music, 1
BBC Radio 4 Ex, 4
Blaze+1, 1
TCC, 1
ADULT Studio 66, 32
Planet Knowledge, 36
Sports Channel Network, 7
Sony Movies Action, 2
Ketchup TV, 47
RNIB Connect, 5
Sony Movies, 26
POP, 100
Al Jazeera Eng, 4
PBS America, 4
Sony Channel +1, 27
POP Max, 122
Sony Movies Christmas +1, 2
Tiny Pop, 72
Sony Movies +1, 10
Sony Channel, 31
Sony Movies Christmas, 3
Tiny Pop, 72
Sony Movies +1, 10
Sony Channel, 31
Sony Movies Christmas, 3
Tiny Pop, 72
Sony Movies +1, 10
Sony Channel, 31
Sony Movies Christmas, 3
PBS America +1, 8

Events with invalid codes in the eight-day EIT off multiplex BBC A at 2019/12/05 00:59:54:

#1: BBC 6 Music, Fri 06 Dec 21:00 - 00:00: title = "Tom Ravenscroft", description = "Tom chats to Ghanaian artist Bryte, and Ahadadream and SN?W provide a guest mix. He released his debut album {}{L''}Too Good For You Liking{R''}{} last year, and has relocated to the UK.", description error bytes: 0x0B, 0x1C, 0x1D, 0x0B

#2: BBC Radio 4 Ex, Thu 05 Dec 06:30 - 07:00: title = "I Have a Dream - Dr Martin...", description = "...Luther King. 4 Extra Debut. Global figures celebrate the legacy Dr Martin Luther King by reading the words of his {L''}I Have a Dream{R''} speech. From 2013.", description error bytes: 0x1C, 0x1D


#777: PBS America +1, Thu 12 Dec 20:35 - 21:40: title = "Gold: The Story of Man's...", description = "...6,000 Year Obsession: Grant Williams looks at gold{R'}s role throughout history: how it became money and its path through the rise and fall of empires and civilisations. (Part 1 of 2)", Huffman coded, description error byte: 0x19

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js's 735 posts NL
Friday, 10 January 2020
9:13 PM

When the retune takes place, both Winter Hill and Ladder Hill will be transmitting on C29. Although they are on different polarities, I think that some interference will be experienced if you are in the wrong location, e.g.Marple.

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PG's 3 posts GB
Sunday, 12 January 2020

2:47 AM


As you probably know, there are 2 retune events at Winter Hill, one on the 20th Feb., the multiplexes moving then are PSB1/BBCA and COM8. But also note that PSB1/BBCA will start broadcasting on its new channel UHF C32 on the 19th Feb., the day before. The simulcast of the old channel UHF C50 will continue until the final retune on 22nd April, this will give time for those that need an aerial change, to get that done before the final retune.

On 22nd April PSB2 &3 and COMs4&5 & the GI mux move. COM4/SDN moves to UHF29 as you've mentioned. BUT at Ladder Hill the PSB3/BBCB HD mux is also supposedly moving from C29 to C30, so there should not be any clash. For some reason that Ladder Hill change isn't listed in Clearance documents, but it is on the Predicted Reception pages and the associated Granada region page!

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Chris.SE's 1,572 posts GB
Monday, 13 January 2020
2:34 AM


Many thanks for clarifying that.

In the absence of the channel list on this site being kept up to date, it would be much appreciated if you were able to shed any light on what the full channel line up will be for Winter Hill after the final retune on 22 April. In particular, do you know where ArqA and ArqB are moving to? In the heading "23 Oct 2019", ArqA is still showing as being on C49, which is denoted as "Being removed from Freeview (for 5G use)", and ArqB has disappeared entirely.

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PG's 3 posts GB

3:49 AM


No problem, the final channels after the Retune event 22 Apr 2020 are -
For PSBs1-3 & COMs 4-8, UHF Channels 32, 34, 35, 29, 31, 37, 55, 56
& for Local muxes G-MAN, L-LIV, L-MAN, L-PTN, UHF Channels 27, 21, 24, 40.
Note for all: Reception of all multiplexes is dependant on location, but especially COMs 7&8 and the Local Multiplexes the latter being beamed in the relevant directions Manchester, Liverpool, Manchester & Preston.
Some may find this page useful - Freeview Detailed Coverage Checker | Freeview

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Chris.SE's 1,572 posts GB
Wednesday, 29 January 2020
David Roberts

2:57 PM

Can i seek clarification for the benefit of Winter Hill's North Wales viewers who are not getting any info an the Two Re-Tune events,Dated 20/02/2020 and 22nd April 2020. Even us in the TV Trade are getting No upto Date info. Having tackled,they don't seem able to give me any re-assurances that both the TV Trade and viewers will receive the relevant info,concerning Winter Hill.

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David Roberts's 23 posts GB

4:18 PM

David Roberts:

Eh, are you kidding me ??? I've seen and heard bad reports about Freeview being useless with what they say periodically, but this bad! How did you contact them by phone or twitter? Please reply to that as I'm pursuing a number of issues with them and this will be added to the list!

OK, most info can be found on what I saw someone else describe as their "'Chad Valley' style Freeview website" ! when of course you discover where to look.
Here - Freeview | All your favourite TV shows, all in one place and all for free corporate/platform-management/700mhz-clearance">What is 700MHz clearance? | Freeview
Click on the link '2020 clearance events(Q1-Q2)'
Freeview | All your favourite TV shows, all in one place and all for free corporate/platform-management/700mhz-clearance">What is 700MHz clearance? | Freeview /clearance-events-2020
There's a miriad of documents you can see listed there, the Granada one will have details BUT
there are errors in that list, some as mentioned in previous posts above.

Some other pages of some (limited) use -
Freeview | All your favourite TV shows, all in one place and all for free corporate/platform-management/planned-engineering-works">Planned engineering works | Freeview
Freeview | All your favourite TV shows, all in one place and all for free service-updates">Service updates | Freeview
Freeview | All your favourite TV shows, all in one place and all for free corporate/platform-management/channel-listings">Channel listings | Freeview

You can also find other information from using the "Check Freeview at my home" on the home page Freeview | All your favourite TV shows, all in one place and all for free and also the Help page. Put in a suitable postcode, house names/numbers can sometime be important where roads are hilly, on the new page scroll down to click on "Detailed view"
At the top of that page, there's a 'View Region' option which can be useful as it carries historical information as well, but again, there can be errors from time to time.

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Chris.SE's 1,572 posts GB
Friday, 31 January 2020
Chris Gunn
12:46 AM

I receive freeview from the Winter Hill transmitter. On early mornings (just after 00:00) of 29, 30 January, both Com7 and Com8 appear to have been off air. This morning, 31 January, just Com8 appears to be off air. I have searched both BBC and Freeview websites and both show no problems and no engineering work taking place.
Is there engineering work going on and how long is it expected to last?

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Chris Gunn's 1 post GB

2:08 AM

Chris Gunn:

As per one of the Freeview links listed in the post immediately before yours, you will find Winter Hill being listed for Planned Engineering with "Possible service interruptions", no doubt in preparations for the retune event on the 20th Feb.2020 when PSB1 will officially move to UHF C32 and COM8 moves to C56.

Note - because the aerial group for Winter Hill was a Group C/D, after the retunes (20th Feb & 22nd April) a Group T/Wideband will be needed by some to receive all multiplexes especially PSB1 after the 20th Feb.

PSB1 will actually start simulcasting on UHF C32 on the 19th Feb. Those that are able to do a manual retune for C32 will be able to find out if they can receive PSB1 on C32. If not, the simulcast means that PSB1 will continue to transmit on C50 until the final retune on 22nd April, however automatic retunes will find the simulcasted PSB1 channels will be located in the programme LCN751 channel range.

For those who cannot receive PSB1 on C32, and do not have Cable or Satellite you can get free help with a new aerial by contacting Freeview on 0808-100-0288, you should do this as soon as possible from the 20th Feb.
IF you make your own arrangements to replace your aerial, you will NOT get help from Freeview.

You will find further comment about the retunes etc. in previous posts to this (Sun.12th Jan. et seq).

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Chris.SE's 1,572 posts GB
David Roberts

8:07 AM

Chris.SE: Great Post Chris. More helpful info in your post than i've ever received from official sources!! I was under the impression,illusion perhaps! that PSB 1,on CH50 would close in the early Hours of 20th February 2020,leaving the New CH32 on its own. Again a lack of official info to blame! Maybe better if PSB 1 is simulcast on both Ch50 and 32,to see and overcome any potential reception problems. Anyone who's older receiving aerials have a Green Coloured plug at the end of the Horizontal aerial Boom,will certainly need to replace their Aerials with a W or T. As there are Tens of Thousands of Winter Hill viewers,all along the North Wales Coast and in the Flintshire and Wrexham areas,i'm concerned that official help in replacing outdated receiving aerials may not be available,for Political reasons. I recall with much annoyance,the intervention by the Welsh Assembly,in Digital UK's Winter Hill DSO promotion,in the North Wales area. It was chaos back in 2009 and i'm rather hoping that there will not be a repeat of that in 2020?

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David Roberts's 23 posts GB
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