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Freeview Channel Updates: August 2015

A round-up of the latest news and updates relating to the UK's digital terrestrial TV service Freeview, updated through the month with the latest information.

On 25th August 2015, ITV Cymru Wales went HD and ITV4 became available to every Freeview household as a result of technical changes to the service. Click here for a summary of the changes.

Find out more about other changes and new channels here:

This section will be updated through the course of the month with the latest updates, usually added within 24 hours.
  • Any updates highlighted in yellow are for viewers with Freeview HD/YouView devices only.
  • The data in brackets, e.g. (ArqB/COM6) refers to the multiplex or 'group of channels' that the service belongs to. For more information about multiplexes, please click here
  • "Streamed channel" refers to services that are broadcast to compatible connected Freeview devices over the internet.

27th August 2015:
1 addition, 1 change:

  • The Store - channel 39 (SDN/COM4) Extended broadcast hours 0600-0400. Now carrying programmes from Hochanda TV.
  • Showcase - New on Freeview channel 254 (SDN/COM4) Streamed/hybrid channel. 

25th August 2015:
4 changes

  • ITV4 - has changed multiplexes (from ArqB/COM6 to D3&4/PSB2). Retune to restore the channel on 24. Available to viewers on relay transmitters for the first time. The old version of ITV4 is on channel 792.
  • ITV3+1 has changed multiplexes (from SDN/COM4 to ArqB/COM6). Retune to restore the channel on 34. New broadcast hours: 1800-0600. The old version of ITV3+1 is on channel 793.
  • CITV has changed multiplexes (from SDN/COM4 to ArqB/COM6). Retune to restore the channel on 122. The old version of CITV is on channel 795.
  • ITV Wales HD - (BBC-B/PSB3) - replacing the previous version of ITV HD in Wales.
ITV changes in detail. See here...

24th August 2015:
1 addition, 2 removals, 1 launch
  • That's Lancashire - launch of channel - channel 8, Blackpool and Preston area (COMUX/Local)
  • CBS Drama - New to Freeview, channel 74 (SDN/COM4) Launches 1st September 2015.
  • Community - channel 790 (COM7) removed
  • VIVA - channel 794 (ArqB/COM6) removed

18th August 2015:
1 addition
  • Cambridge TV - New to Freeview, channel 8. Cambridge area only. (Local/COMUX) (POP and QVC Extra are also available to viewers in the Cambridge area for the first time.)

17th August 2015:
1 change
  • Huda - Streamed channel - (Was "Synapse 1") - coming soon on channel 249. (SDN/COM4)

11th August 2015:
2 additions, 1 removal
  • Rishtey Europe - New to Freeview. Added on channel 77 (COM7)
  • That's Lancashire - New to Freeview for viewers in Blackpool & Preston on channel 8. Officially launches later this month (Local/COMUX)
  • FireHit TV - now completely removed from channel 60 for viewers in Manchester (G_MAN)

2nd August 2015:
1 addition, 1 change
  • Fire Hit TV - channel 60 in Manchester only (G_MAN): the channel is no longer licensed by Ofcom. Currently showing a blue screen.
  • Passion - New to Freeview. Added on channel 253 (SDN/COM4) - streamed channel

1st August 2015:
2 changes
  • 5* - channel 31 (SDN/COM4) New broadcast hours; now on-air 0900-0300.
  • Vision TV - channel 244 (SDN/COM4). Service 'GEM' removed. (streamed channel).

30th July 2015:
3 changes
  • Spike - channel 31 (ArqB/COM6) New broadcast hours; now available 0900-1100.
  • VIVA - new on channel 58 (COM7) New frequency and new channel number. No change to broadcast hours.
  • VIVA - channel 74 (ArqB/COM6) Has moved to channel 794. Redirection slate to new service on 58. 
Please see the July 2015 page for earlier updates.

Dates may be provisional and subject to change.
  • September 2015: The Craft Channel will be available as a micro-channel on the Showcase service on Freeview channel 254.
  • September 2015: Talking Pictures (full details to be confirmed)
  • 2015: Launch of Freeview Play, a new service combining Freeview and on-demand/catch-up TV in one place. 
  • 2016: BBC Three and BBC Three HD to be removed from Freeview channel 7 and 105, subject to the outcome of the second BBC Trust consultation which will take place in August and September. Proposals to launch BBC One+1 by the BBC Executive have been rejected by the BBC Trust. The channel will now not launch.
  • 2016: CBBC to be extended by 2 hours a night, according to the same proposal.
  • 2017-2018: roll-out of BBC One English regions and BBC Two Nations in HD.

Other updates:
  • Synapse 2 and 3 (channels 250 and 251) are placeholders for forthcoming new streamed channel services. 

The following channels have recently obtained Ofcom licences allowing them to broadcast on Freeview, but further information is currently not available:
Receipt of an Ofcom licence is no guarantee that a station will launch.
  • True Entertainment + 1 


BT Sport will broadcast a minimum of 12 Champions League football fixtures each season via BT Sport Showcase, which is currently on Freeview channel 59. BT Sport Showcase is available to around 90% of UK households, and is broadcast together on the same frequency as Spike (channel 31). You may need to retune if you can receive Spike on Freeview, but not BT Sport Showcase.

Viva is only available using Freeview HD compatible receivers in areas where viewers can already receive channels such as BBC News HD on channel 107. VIVA is now on channel 58 in those areas - see Freeview coverage, below.

You can check which Freeview channels should be available in your area on the official Digital UK postcode checker. The channels that you will be able to receive is also dependent on the state of your aerial, cabling and the type of receiver you use. 

During hot spells of weather with high pressure, Freeview reception in some parts of the country and particularly southern and eastern England is prone to co-channel interference. Atmospheric conditions allow signals from distant transmitters to travel further, disrupting reception of services from local transmitters.

Viewers who often suffer from prolonged interference during hot weather should consult a local TV aerial specialist to see if there is a local solution to the problem. For example, since digital switchover, there are a number of additional transmitters serving the south coast which may provide a more consistent signal. Ultimately, reception problems should clear when the weather changes.

Between April and July 2015, multiplex operator Arqiva carried out a network upgrade, adding an extra commercial multiplex of channels for viewers with a Freeview HD device, EE TV or YouView box. It is now available from transmitter sites that also carry "COM7", the home of BBC Four HD, Al Jazeera English HD and 4seven HD. COM8 currently carries two QVC HD channels on Freeview HD channel 111 and 112, although a retune may be required. Details...

  • Local TV services for Aberdeen, Ayr, Basingstoke, Carlisle, Dundee, Guildford, Maidstone, Mold (NE Wales), Reading, Salisbury, Scarborough, Swansea, York are licensed by Ofcom and due to launch within the next two years.

Two years ago, in August 2013, Travel Channel and True Entertainment launched on Freeview. To this day, True Entertainment isn't available from transmitters in Wales, but Travel Channel has recently become a full 24/7 service on Freeview. Also that month, placeholder for the service that would later become Channel 5+24 first appeared on the platform. Labelled 5 Later, it was rumoured to become Channel 5's answer to 4seven. 5 Later became Channel 5+24 in 2014, repeating last night's Channel 5 programming after 7pm, with teleshopping slots throughout the day.

Ten years ago, in August 2005, participation channel Quiz Call, then owned by Channel 4, launched on Freeview. It was just the beginning of a whole raft of similar participation channels, including Big Deal and ITV Play. With dodgy answers to seemingly impossible questions and allegations of manipulation, fraud and deception, most quiz channels, including Quiz Call, were withdrawn several years later.

July 2015
VIVA moves to COM7, Jewellery Maker returns

June 2015
BBC launches extra Red Button streams for Glastonbury and Wimbledon, Travel Channel goes 24/7

May 2015
Multiplex COM8 rolls out to more areas; That's Manchester launches 

a516digital derives information from a number of different sources, including individual service providers, platform operators and regulatory organisations. In the absence of official information, a516digital uses broadcast monitoring resources to check for service changes as well as direct observation and reception reports from readers. Information is usually updated within 24 hours, but may take longer to appear if verification is required and is subject to revision. Older pages, including archived items on this website may not reflect the current situation.

Last updated and archived 
This page will be updated throughout August 2015 with the latest developments. If there's a major update it will be re-posted near the top of the homepage.
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