Around 10,000 addresses in an area to the west of York City Centre will receive a postcard later this week from the organisation responsible for ensuring people continue to receive free-to-air television when 4G mobile services operating at 800 MHz are launched, explaining that 4G at 800 MHz could cause problems with their Freeview service.
The tests are taking place in an area of York where the majority of households receive their Freeview signal from the Emley Moor transmitter in West Yorkshire. Other parts of York receive Freeview from Bilsdale in the North York Moors.
Unlike the previous tests in London, the York test takes place in an area where the Emley Moor signal isn't as strong as London's Crystal Palace transmitter and where Freeview and 4G will sit closer together on the frequency band than in London, increasing the risk of interference.
Emley Moor currently transmits up to 726 MHz - 65 MHz away from the lower edge of 4G transmissions starting at 791 MHz. From November, this changes with the launch of the new Comux-operated local TV multiplex for Leeds, which will use a central frequency of 754 MHz - sitting in between existing Freeview and new 4G services. The area to the west of York City Centre is shown on Ofcom maps as being on the eastern fringe of the Leeds local TV footprint. It is not known how 4G might affect reception of the lower-powered local TV service in fringe areas.
Simon Beresford-Wylie, chief executive of at800, said, "The testing in York will help us further refine our approach, alongside the tests we’ve conducted and which continue in Brighton. We urge those viewers in York who receive a postcard, and who see new problems with their Freeview reception, to call us."
- Viewers can call at800 on 0333 31 31 800 for more information. Viewers who do not receive a postcard from at800 are outside of the test area and are unlikely to be affected by the tests. Cable and satellite services are not affected. Existing 4G services operated by EE in the 1800 MHz band does not interfere with TV services.