Disappearing Freeview

In March 2012, I spoke to a representative from Digital UK to ask if the new digital television signal would be affected by the numerous windfarms being constructed in Northumberland. That person was unable to give me an informed reply.

As residents around the Chatton area are only too aware, construction is now going ahead on the erection of the first of the windfarms which will eventually surround the television transmitter.

In the last few weeks, as work has progressed, some of my Freeview channels have vanished, being replaced with an announcement telling me the programme is not available because of a bad signal, or because it is encrypted. In other cases the picture has become pixelated.

Due to the construction of the Alcan windfarm, some people living in Ellington have lost their television pictures and these were only restored after the installation of larger aerials and signal boosters, pointing towards the Chatton transmitter.

Originally RAF Boulmer had strong objections to these installations, fearing interference with their early warning system and construction was delayed until a technical solution was found.

Once the windfarms are completed will larger areas, like Ellington, lose their terrestrial television signals?

Will we be expected to pay for the expensive alternative of satellite Freeview? Is this another penalty about to be inflicted upon those of us who live in rural Northumberland?

David Rixon,

by email