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Freeview frequency changes reach SW England and NE Wales

Viewers and installers in parts of south-west England and the north-east of Wales have been alerted to a new set of Freeview retune dates.

During February and March 2019, Freeview frequencies at a number of transmitters will change as part of a national programme to clear frequencies in the 700MHz for future 5G mobile services.

In addition, a few smaller relays in the Channel Islands and south-west Scotland will also see some changes.

On each retune date, services in the affected areas will be temporarily unavailable as engineering work takes place at each transmitter site. Main transmitters will be live on the new frequencies by morning, relays follow later in the day.

Not all channels may be affected, as in some places only certain multiplexes, or groups of channels are changing.

Viewers who encounter problems restoring Freeview channels are advised to visit or call the Freeview Advice Line on 0808 100 0288.

Some of the main changes include new frequencies for some HD channels including BBC News HD and local channels, alongside national services including Sky News and Dave, taking place in North-East Wales on 27th February 2019. Due to signal overlap, some viewers in Merseyside and Cheshire who receive Welsh TV may also be affected. Relays covering areas including Bala and Llangollen will also be affected.

The south Devon and Dorset coast will be affected by changes at the main Beacon Hill transmitter (Torbay) and relays as well as a number of Stockland Hill relay sites on the 27th March 2019. This will include the cessation of extra HD channels such as BBC News HD and Quest HD in the Torbay area (COM7 and COM8 multiplexes).

Further retune dates covering parts of Northern England and other areas of Wales and SW England later in 2019 are due to be announced in the new year.

Transmitter group
Area served
Retune date
Caldbeck Scotland (Creetown relay only)
the Creetown area
north east Wales
Fremont Point 
(relays only)
the Channel Islands
Beacon Hill
Torbay and south Devon
Caradon Hill 
(Salcombe relay only)
the Salcombe area
Stockland Hill
(some relays only)
parts of Devon and Dorset
Source data: Digital UK 

The frequency changes are due to be completed by 2020, when the vacated frequencies will be made available to mobile network operators.

(c) a516digital, using information from Digital UK.