All Freeview viewers in Shetland will need to retune their TVs and boxes today as the first digital switchover in the north of Scotland gets underway.
Shortly after midnight, analogue BBC Two was turned off permanently at the Bressay transmitter and engineers started switching on digital signals at eight relay transmitters serving thousands of homes. These households will be able to receive Freeview for the first time today.
The changes also affect existing Freeview viewers who may find their BBC TV channels are missing. These services have moved to new frequencies and can be restored by retuning Freeview TVs and boxes.
The second and final stage of switchover in Shetland takes place on 19th May when the remaining analogue channels will be switched off permanently. On this date, further Freeview channels from ITV, Channel 4 and Five will also become available from relay transmitters for the first time.
The Switchover Help Scheme is still welcoming applications from eligible older and disabled people to get help to convert one television, including a choice of equipment, installation and aftercare. For those who have already signed up, the Help Scheme call centre is available to help with any problems and can be contacted on 0800 408 7654.
John MacNeil, Digital UK’s assistant national manager for the north, said this morning: “Shetland’s switchover is underway, and many people are receiving Freeview channels for the first time.
“We’re now encouraging any viewers who still don’t have the necessary equipment to get ready in time for 19the May, when all the analogue channels will be permanently switched off. Anyone who needs advice during this period should contact Digital UK or sign up for the Help Scheme if they are eligible.”
Digital UK, the body leading the switchover, continues to provide support through local advice points, as well as its website and advice line. A switchover roadshow is also running today and tomorrow in Lerwick.
See www.digitaluk.co.uk/stvnorthadvicepoints or call 08456 50 50 50.