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STV gets green light to launch three new local TV services

  • Plus: Ofcom agrees repeats reduction for STV's existing local TV services

STV has been successful in its bid to obtain three local TV licences serving Aberdeen, Ayr and Dundee.

Ofcom confirmed that the Scottish broadcaster had won the licences earlier today. This means STV now has five local TV licences in Scotland - adding the new licences to its existing City TV services covering Glasgow and Edinburgh, which will enable it to build its network of local channels on Freeview in Scotland.

Bobby Hain, Director of Channels at STV, said:
“STV is committed to delivering local content for viewers in Scotland and the award today of three additional TV licences will serve to complement our existing STV family of broadcast, online and mobile services.

"Local TV is a long term commitment for STV and we look forward to working with our education partners in Aberdeen, Ayr and Dundee to deliver these new services."

These three new services will be delivered in partnership with Robert Gordon University and North East Scotland College in Aberdeen, the University of the West of Scotland (UWS) in Ayr, and Abertay University and Dundee and Angus College in Dundee.

Exact launch dates for the three channels have yet to be set.

For viewers in Aberdeen, Ayr and Dundee, the arrival of local TV will also mean two extra channels on Freeview. Due to the way local TV is broadcast, viewers will also gain access to QVC Extra (channel 57) and children's channel POP (channel 125) once local transmitter masts begin to broadcast the local TV multiplex.

Local TV in Scotland is currently allocated Freeview channel 23, although this may change subject to the BBC Trust's pending decision on BBC Three. The BBC Executive has previously stated that BBC One+1, if approved, would take a slot lower down the Freeview channel list, which could facilitate a promotion up the channel listings for local TV.

Variation for Glasgow and Edinburgh services
Ofcom also agreed licence variations for STV's existing City TV services for Glasgow and Edinburgh. The licence variation will allow these channels to reduce the hours of repeats of local TV programmes shown during peak hours from seven hours of repeats to none. Ofcom says it agreed this change "because it will not be a departure from the character of service. "

It confirmed that "the hours of first run local programming, overall hours of repeats of local programming and scheduling of local news and current affairs programming required under STV’s licences will remain the same."

  • Ofcom has also rejected the sole applicant for the local TV service in Inverness More here...


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