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Made TV splits Sky and Freeview local TV feeds


Made Television has split its terrestrial and satellite services in the latest sign of cost-cutting for the local TV broadcaster.

A single generic service has replaced the existing regionalised service on Sky channel 117 for viewers who could previously see the Birmingham, Bristol, Leeds, Liverpool and Tyne & Wear channels. The generic service is carried on Sky channel 134 in Wales, replacing Made in Cardiff.

The new satellite service
All existing feeds now point to a single channel on Sky.  The single channel carries a new block of back-to-back news programmes from across the Made TV Network, premiering between 5 and 8pm, and repeated between 2:30 and 5:30am and again from 6:00am - 9:00am. Each Made TV station that was previously represented on satellite has its news shown during these hours. Made in Teesside and Made in North Wales were previously not carried on satellite, and their news programmes continue on Freeview and Virgin Media (where available).

This means that programmes such as The Big Daily (pictured above) at 6:30pm are no longer available on satellite.

On Saturday and Sunday evenings, hour long weekend editions of the local news programmes from the six stations represented on satellite are staggered in two 3x60 slots across the weekend.

Freeview, YouView and Virgin Media
With the exception of Cardiff, on Freeview and YouView as well as on Virgin Media (where available), the normal local TV schedules continue during these hours, containing the local news and features as well as daily news and entertainment programme The Big Daily, which first launched on the network in November 2017. The Big Daily is a hybrid local/national programme, with local opt-outs that can no longer be carried on satellite.

Further variations continue at 8pm, with the satellite version carrying some of Made TV's networked programmes including  The Week with Steve LeFevre on Thursdays, but with variations on other days.

Except in Cardiff...
On the 2nd January 2018, the Made in Cardiff service on all platforms was replaced by the single service that as of today is shown on satellite across all Made TV broadcast areas, meaning shows like The Big Daily are not being shown on the channel at the present time. Cardiff specific programmes including Loving Welsh Food are now incorporated into the main single channel's schedule. Cardiff's news programme is shown first during the 5pm news block.

Online, some Made TV Network channels have launched new look websites, which appear to be scaled down versions of their predecessor, with a focus on video content, but without channel schedule information.

Local TV operators including Made TV are now having to adjust to a world post-BBC licence fee funding: for the first three years of operation, each local station had access to a pot of licence fee money in return for news material to be shared with the BBC. For most of the first generation of stations that launched between 2013 and 2015, this source of income has now ended.

Made TV's existing local TV streams have been closed on satellite, and all point to the former Made in Birmingham videostream, which now carries the single generic satellite feed, slashing the cost of satellite distribution for the broadcaster. Made TV's local TV licence commitments to Ofcom only apply to the terrestrial versions of the channels.

An overview of the state of affairs in the local TV sector is available here...


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