Improvement expected for Ripon TV viewers after transmitter fire


Aug 18, 2021

The operator of Bilsdale transmitter has said it anticipates “significant improvement” to television coverage in Masham and Ripon.

Fire crews were called to the mast last week after reports of smoke was reported coming from the area.

The loss of the transmitter is affecting parts of Harrogate, Boroughbridge, Kirkby Malzeard, Knaresborough, Masham, Pateley Bridge, Ripon and other locations that rely on a signal that serves the Tyne Tees region.

An update issued by the mast operator, Arqiva, last night said that it now expected to be able to give better television coverage to Masham and Ripon.

It said a 15m mast was planned for Arncliffe Wood as part of the response to the fire. However, wider coverage is not expected to return until August 28.

A statement from Arqiva said:

“As per our previous update, we now expect to have completed the improvement of TV coverage from Eston Nab, and also the installation of a further 15m mast at a site in Arncliffe Wood by the weekend.

“These two developments should deliver a significant improvement in TV coverage for viewers in the areas including Darlington, Stockton, Catterick, Leyburn, Masham and Ripon. We will update viewers on any action they need to take with further updates later this week.

“Work on phase 2 of the recovery plan continues. We still anticipate the temporary mast to be effective by 28 August.”

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Meanwhile, Freeview has issued advice to TV viewers who continue to have problems with their coverage.

It includes using online streaming, such as BBC iPlayer and ITV Hub, and on-demand services.

Freeview said repositioning aerials to pick up service from another transmitter was an option. But the company added that an accredited installer should be employed to carry out the work.

It said:

“Repositioning your aerial so that it takes a signal from a different transmitter may be an option for some viewers who wish to attempt to get some signal back in the short term.

“However, there’s no guarantee that another transmitter is available (reception is highly dependent on several factors such as local geography between you and the transmitter), and the signal quality might be variable.

“If you choose to have your aerial repositioned and pay for an installer to do this, you may wish to then have it repositioned again when service from Bilsdale is restored.

“If you wish to have your aerial repositioned, please do not attempt this yourself.”

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