BBC moves CBBC in pre-switchover regions

last updated: 21:45 09/05/2012

The BBC is in the process of moving CBBC on Freeview in pre-switchover regions from digital multiplex 1 (home of BBC One, Two, Three etc) to multiplex B (current home to BBC Four etc). The move will affect viewers in the Tyne Tees and Ulster regions - the two regions that will have not gone through digital switchover by the time of the London Olympics.
(c) BBC

CBBC currently timeshares with BBC Three, with the services switching at 18:58 and 05:30. For the duration of the Olympics, BBC Three will go full time with extended Olympic coverage from morning to late evening. In post-switchover regions (most of the UK), BBC Parliament will go off air to allow BBC Three to go full time, with CBBC sharing with Olympic Red Button channel 302. However, in pre-switchover regions this isn't possible, as up to switchover, the BBC's standard definition services are spread over two lower-capacity multiplexes, with BBC Parliament on a different multiplex to BBC Three. 

Therefore, viewers in the Tyne Tees and Ulster TV regions will now see CBBC on multiplex B, ultimately allowing BBC Three to go full time during the Olympics.

Initially, the service on multiplex B will be a placeholder preparing the way for the channel to go live later on, but on channel 73 rather than channel 70.

Technical work in preparation for the additional Olympic services is taking place now due to a "technical lock-down" from July and lasting during the Olympics and Paralympics. This means that all changes to the Freeview platform must be complete by early July and no further changes be made until early September. 
  • Viewers in East Sussex and Kent will also see CBBC appear on multiplex B, however digital switchover will have reached this region before the Olympics, so should not need to retune to continue watching CBBC, apart from during the two stages of switchover when digital services as a whole move frequencies.

To reiterate, the above does not affect viewers in the Anglia, Border, Central, Channel, Granada, London, STV Central, STV North, West, Westcountry or Yorkshire regions nor viewers in the western half of the ITV Meridian region. 

a516_digital will be updated with the latest information and clarifications on this developing story... Come back for more!

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