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JEREMY BILLINGHAM

Television Reception Specialist

Freeview - Freesat - SKY - DAB & FM​​ Radio


Droitwich, Worcester, Bromsgrove, Pershore
Kidderminster & Stourport

31/10/16
There may be TV reception problems for people who have their TV Aerial pointed towards the Ridge Hill transmitter near Ledbury. This transmitter serves large parts of Worcestershire.

I've had some calls this morning from people complaining about poor TV reception and/or no reception at all, yesterday (Sunday 30th October) and also today.

Looking at the weather readings and forecast today would strongly suggests that this interference is caused by the current High Atmospheric Pressure which is centred over Europe. Also, current predictions indicate the presence of this High Pressure could last until Friday this week, great if you want to go for a walk in the weak Autumn sunshine but maybe not so good if you want to watch TV!

While this current spell of good weather persists one very important thing to remember, if, at at any time, now or in the future you ever experience pixelation / breakup or a sudden loss of TV channels.....

DO NOT RE-TUNE YOUR TV

Many people now know how to access the"Auto re-tune" in their TVs setup menu, unfortunately I'm often finding that customers use this new found knowledge as a "cure all" for any problems that may arise with their TV, whether that be reception related or otherwise.

Re-tuning a TV during periods of poor reception or loss of picture will usually only delete the TVs memory of frequencies / channels which were originally saved from the transmitter that your TV Aerial is pointing at, creating a bigger problem, often meaning you will be without TV pictures for much, much longer than people who didn't re-tune their TV.

With the exception of an on screen message suggesting a re-tune is necessary (For an example see my news item below, dated 22 August) or advise from someone like myself or TV retail shop etc, a willy-nilly re-tune of a TV in the hope that it will restore the channels should be avoided and is almost always counter productive.

The on-screen message "Weak or no signal" which sometimes appears on a TV screen while experiencing poor reception is NOT an invitation to re-tune the TV!
23/10/16
As with many questions similar to this one there's never one simple answer that fits all and despite the fact that the Analogue TV service was switched off back in 2011 it's still a question I get asked so I've tried to answer it here with as much detail as possible.

Successfully receiving all Digital / Freeview channels with an old Analogue TV Aerial very much depends on which TV transmitter your TV Aerial is pointed towards. If you can identify which transmitter your TV Aerial is pointing at, the following information should answer the question.

TV transmitters only transmit signals in one polarity, either Horizontally or Vertically so for example if you live in Droitwich and your TV Aerial points roughly South then your Aerial is going to be receiving it's signals from either the Malvern or Ridge Hill transmitter. To identify which one of those two transmitters your TV Aerial is receiving it's signals from you need to observe which way up the elements are on the Aerial, Horizontal or Vertical.

Malvern is a Vertically polarised transmitter and Ridge Hill is Horizontal.

Another example - In my image above the TV Aerial's elements are Horizontal, the Aerial points North / North East from a chimney stack in Droitwich and although Bromsgrove is almost the same direction with it being a vertically polarised transmitter you could be as good as sure that this Aerial must be receiving it's signals from the horizontally polarised Sutton Coldfield transmitter.

As a pure coincidence the Malvern & Ridge Hill transmitters are South and Bromsgrove & Sutton Coldfield are roughly the same direction North /NE when viewed from Droitwich so observing the Aerials polarity is essential if you want to identify the transmitter.

If you live in Worcestershire there is a 99.9% chance that your TV Aerial will be receiving it's signals from one of the transmitters I've listed below.

The V or H that follows the name of the transmitter indicates it's polarity.

Bromsgrove V

The Bromsgrove transmitter transmits most of the main BBC and ITV channels as well as all of the main HD channels within the receiving range of old analogue TV Aerials. If you're located within a couple of miles of this transmitter then there is a greater chance of picking up many more if not all available Digital channels but this is very dependant on your location relative to the transmitter, etc etc. So in short, this transmitter does require a Wideband Digital Aerial to receive all of the available channels.

Kidderminster V

The Kidderminster transmitter, unlike the other transmitters I've
listed here is often referred to as a "Freeview light transmitter" in other words, it, unlike many other transmitters doesn't transmit all of the available Digital channels but all of the channels that are currently available can still be received by the older analogue type. This will change during the Spring of 2018 to make way for new mobile phone services, so to continue to receive TV signals and all available TV channels from this transmitter an Aerial upgrade will be necessary before the end of April 2018.

Lark Stoke V (Near Stratford-upon-Avon

The Lark Stoke transmitter transmits most of the main BBC and ITV channels as well as all of the main HD channels within the receiving range of old analogue TV Aerials. If you're located within a couple of miles of this transmitter then there is a greater chance of picking up many more if not all available Digital channels but this is very dependant on your location relative to the transmitter, etc etc. So in short, this transmitter does require a Wideband Digital Aerial to receive all of the available channels.

Malvern V

The Malvern transmitter currently transmits all of the available Digital / Freeview channels within the receiving range of older type (Narrow band) analogue TV Aerials.This will change during the Spring of 2018 to make way for new mobile phone services, so to continue to receive TV signals and all available TV channels from this transmitter an Aerial upgrade will be necessary before the end of April 2018.

Ridge Hill H (Near Ledbury)

The Ridge Hill transmitter transmits all of the available digital / Freeview channels within the receiving range of old analogue TV Aerials so an Aerial upgrade is not necessary for this transmitter.

Sutton Coldfield H

The Sutton Coldfield transmitter transmits most of it's Digital / Freeview channels within the receiving range of the older type analouge (narrow-band) TV Aerials, so long as your TV Aerial is in a reasonable condition it will work just fine. There are currently around 15 or so channels that are available from this transmitter that may require an Aerial upgrade but this will depend on many local factors and from my personal experience many old Aerials do receive these channels without too much difficulty.

Wrekin H (Near Shrewsbury)

The Wrekin transmitter transmits most of the main BBC and ITV channels as well as all of the main HD channels within the receiving range of old analogue TV Aerials. If you're located within a couple of miles of this transmitter then there is a greater chance of picking up many more if not all available Digital channels but this is very dependant on your location relative to the transmitter, etc etc. So in short, this transmitter does require a Wideband Digital Aerial to receive all of the available channels.