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

first published this on - UK Free TV
sa_streetviewGoogle Streetviewsa_gmapsGoogle mapsa_bingBing mapsa_gearthGoogle Earthsa_gps53.625,-2.516 or 53°37'30"N 2°30'56"Wsa_postcodeBL6 6SL


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.

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

Winter Hill transmitter - Winter Hill transmitter: Possible effect on TV reception week commencing 27/05/2024 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 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-100,000W
Channel icons
1 BBC One (SD) North West, 2 BBC Two England, 9 BBC Four, 23 BBC Three, 201 CBBC, 202 CBeebies, 231 BBC News, 232 BBC Parliament, plus 17 others

 H max
C34 (578.0MHz)726mDTG-100,000W
Channel icons
3 ITV 1 (SD) (Granada), 4 Channel 4 (SD) North ads, 5 Channel 5, 6 ITV 2, 10 ITV3, 13 E4, 14 Film4, 15 Channel 4 +1 North ads, 18 More4, 26 ITV4, 28 ITVBe, 30 E4 +1, 35 ITV1 +1 (Granada),

 H max
C35- (585.8MHz)726mDTG-100,000W
Channel icons
46 5SELECT, 101 BBC One HD North West, 102 BBC Two HD England, 103 ITV 1 HD (ITV Granada), 104 Channel 4 HD North ads, 105 Channel 5 HD, 106 BBC Four HD, 107 BBC Three HD, 204 CBBC HD, 205 CBeebies HD, plus 1 others

 H max
C29 (538.0MHz)726mDTG-8100,000W
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 ITV3 +1, 59 ITV4 +1, 64 Blaze, 67 TRUE CRIME, 68 TRUE CRIME XTRA, 78 TCC, 81 Blaze +1, 83 Together TV, 91 WildEarth, 93 ITVBe +1, 209 Ketchup TV, 210 Ketchup Too, 211 YAAAS!, 267 Al Jazeera English, plus 30 others

 H max
C31 (554.0MHz)726mDTG-8100,000W
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 max
C37 (602.0MHz)726mDTG-8100,000W
Channel icons
12 Quest, 25 W, 27 Yesterday, 34 GREAT! movies, 39 DMAX, 44 HGTV, 52 GREAT! romance, 56 That's TV (UK), 63 GREAT! romance mix, 71 That’s 60s, 73 HobbyMaker, 82 Talking Pictures TV, 84 PBS America, 235 Al Jazeera Eng, plus 18 others

 H -20dB
C40 (626.0MHz)572mDTG-121,000W
Channel icons
from 1st October 2014: 7 That's Manchester,

 H -17dB
C24 (498.0MHz)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 -20dB
C57 (762.0MHz)572mDTG-21,000W
Channel icons
 Now 90s,  Spotlight TV,  Clubland TV,  Country Music Entertainment ,  Classic Hits MCR, 76 That's TV 2 MCR, 77 That's 60s MCR, 80 That's 80s, 86 That's 90s MCR, 88 TV Warehouse+1,

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 (140°)
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 / 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 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.

Wednesday, 19 February 2020

8:01 PM


Oh, forgot to add a lot of the Freeview(DUK) database has NOT been correctly updated. Many TXs still showing 2/3 for COM8 in the Detailed Coverage Checker.

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Chris.SE's 4,201 posts GB flag

9:50 PM

Chris.SE: Yes, I saw the report on DS. They might have changed simultaneously but com8 Winter Hill is not in the SFN yet. In fact, it has a Cell ID of 2369 which is the same for all the multiplexes that originate from Winter Hill apart from com7 which has Cell ID of 16449.

The Cell ID is shown in this screenshot from CrazyScan2, taken the morning after reading the report. I'm not sure what bitrate CrazyCat shows here but the parameters are correct.

Winter Hill com8 14 February 2020.png - Album on Imgur

CrazyScan / Wiki / Info

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js's 827 posts GB flag

11:30 PM


Hi technically you are right of course, I could have worded what I said better - instead of "because it's an SFN" it might have been been better to say "because they all will be/or are part of an SFN it's sensible/necessary for them all to change simultaneously"

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Chris.SE's 4,201 posts GB flag
Thursday, 20 February 2020

2:24 AM

Chris.SE: Well, com8 is up and running on C56- 753.833MHz. I wasn't expecting that. The Cell ID is now 16449.

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js's 827 posts AT flag

3:58 AM


For anyone visiting here that has lost channels and doesn't realise what has happened, there has been a retune event.
The PSB1/BBCA multiplex has moved to UHF C32 and the COM8 multiplex to C56. You need to retune to restore your channels.
If you are having trouble getting the BBC channels in their normal place at LCNs 1,2,9, .......etc in the EPG, this could be because you have an old C/D group aerial that is not receiving C32 very well or at all. Some of these aerials will work ok if you are in a good reception area. Otherwise you now need a Group T/Wideband aerial to receive all multiplexes from Winter Hill reliably.

For those having problems with the BBC multiplex on C32, you can still find the old programmes/channels at LCN751, 752..... in your EPG until the 22nd April to give you time to get your aerial problem resolved without loss of service. See Problems with Freeview reception? | Help receiving TV and radio and click on Engineering work affecting television services in the North West of England on the 19th and 20th February for more detail about these changes.

If you don't have Cable or Satellite, and use your own aerial (not a Communal or Landlord's one) then you can get free help - phone Freeview on 0808-100-0288.
See What is 700MHz clearance? | Freeview for technical information about these changes.
For further information about these Winter Hill retunes and channels used, see my posts on 12th/13th Jan et seq. on p189 here.

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Chris.SE's 4,201 posts GB flag
David Freeman
8:20 PM

ON instructions on our tv I have tried all day to re-tune the tv, however all the BBC stations have been not available. At 6pm there is a very weak signal when I do a manual tuning.
When will we have a good signal as we had previously?
Post code BL8 2HD, house number 2

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David Freeman's 1 post GB flag
David's: mapD's Freeview map terrainD's terrain plot wavesD's frequency data D's Freeview Detailed Coverage

8:26 PM

David Freeman:

I suggest you read the post immediately before yours!

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Chris.SE's 4,201 posts GB flag
Dave LW
9:15 PM

I happened to have a decent external Group T aerial fitted in Tuesday 18 Feb as part of roof repair works, and was getting good signals (~80% signal strength on ch58(COM4) according to my PVR's diagnostics, similar on other channels) immediately after installation, and I had no problems with recordings made on Tuesday or Wednesday, including some from COM4. My location is BB8 7DS (Colne, right on top of a hill).

Today (20 Feb), both before and after retune, signal strength is more like 40% on ch58 and most other channels, though ch32 is more like 65%, and recordings made from ch58/COM4 after the retune are showing some patches of mild breakup (kind of expected at that signal strength).

Have the Winter Hill power outputs been [maybe temporarily] lowered as part of the retune process?

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Dave LW's 1 post GB flag
Dave's: mapD's Freeview map terrainD's terrain plot wavesD's frequency data D's Freeview Detailed Coverage
Friday, 21 February 2020

2:52 AM

Dave LW:

You should get virtually perfect reception from Winter Hill at your location. I can't find any reports of any problems with power reductions either by Freeview or the BBC, everything should be running as normal.
There might have been a temporary blip of course, but if you still have the problem, check out your flyleads and other coax connections in case you have disturbed something, eg. if you unplugged the aerial to retune to clear previous tuning first.

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Chris.SE's 4,201 posts GB flag
Dave LW
11:25 AM

Having looked at the aerial more closely from the ground, it seems the installer had fitted it with the connection box the wrong way up (on top of the boom, rather than underneath), so I guess rainwater probably got in to it, explaining why it worked well initially, but less so now, and it was just a coincidence that the signal degradation happened just when the Winter Hill changes did.
Luckily, though the scaffolding for the roof job is being taken down as we speak, there's enough in the relevant area to give access for a fix.

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Dave LW's 1 post GB flag
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