This morning (Friday 23 October 2015) digital radio listeners in West Wiltshire were urged to retune their DAB digital radios to ensure they continue to receive their favourite local radio stations.
This is as a result of essential engineering work to digital transmitters in the West Wiltshire area which will enhance and extend DAB digital radio coverage for thousands of listeners in the area and many miles of roads.
The retune is part of a programme of work that will expand and boost the digital radio signal in Wiltshire and will expand coverage to over 25,000 listeners in the Western part of the county with a new transmitter launch serving listeners in the Trowbridge area.
The local digital radio stations impacted by the engineering work are BBC Wiltshire, Heart Wiltshire, Heart Bath, Smooth Wiltshire and Capital. Not all parts of the county are affected but those listeners who are unable to find their favourite local stations should retune their DAB digital radios this morning.
Retuning a DAB digital radio is a simple process. Listeners should press the auto tune or auto scan button on their DAB digital radio or go into the radio’s menu and press auto tune. Some older radios will require a full scan. For more information go to http://getdigitalradio.com/dab-news/retune.
Wiltshire is one of the leading counties in the UK for digital radio with 65% of all households having a DAB digital radio and 41% of radio listening to a digital platform, well ahead of the national figures of 51% and 40% respectively (source: Rajar Q2 2015).
Tony Worgan, Editor, BBC Wiltshire, said: “BBC Wiltshire has been a major part of life in the county for over 25 years and our coverage of local news, sport and local life is second to none. We’re encouraging our listeners on DAB digital radio in West Wiltshire to retune their digital radios this morning to ensure we can continue bringing them all the programmes and local content they love.”
The engineering work and launch of the new digital transmitter serving Trowbridge, which was delivered by communications infrastructure company, Arqiva, is part of an industry and Government programme of work that aims to expand the coverage and listening to DAB digital radio across the UK. Government, BBC and commercial radio have agreed plans to build a further 182 local DAB transmitters to extend local DAB coverage to more than 90% of the population which will bring eight million listeners across the UK into coverage and will add over 6,700 km of roads.
Ed Vaizey, Minister for Culture and the Digital Economy, said: “It’s brilliant news that, through a simple radio retune, more than 25,000 DAB radio listeners in the West Wiltshire region will now have enhanced and extended access to a wide choice of exciting digital radio stations.
“We are committed to providing the UK with the best digital radio coverage and our work with Digital Radio UK is just one example of how we are working with partners to secure the future of digital radio in the UK.”
Ford Ennals, CEO Digital Radio UK, said: “Wiltshire is one of the strongest areas in the UK for digital radio and we’re delighted that today even more listeners will be able to enjoy their favourite local stations on DAB. We urge all listeners in West Wiltshire to retune their DAB radios to ensure they don’t miss out on the great range of services available to them.”
Paul Eaton, Director of Digital Radio, Arqiva, said: “I am delighted that the local DAB coverage expansion programme is continuing with Wiltshire being the latest area to receive a digital boost. We look forward to playing our part in expanding local DAB coverage to the level of commercial radio FM coverage.”
NOTES FOR EDITORS
- Listeners on DAB digital radio in West Wiltshire will need to retune their DAB digital radio on the morning of Friday 23 October to continue to listen to local services on DAB digital radio.
- Retuning a DAB digital radio is a simple process. Simply press the auto tune or auto scan button on your DAB digital radio or go into the menu and press auto tune. If this does not restore all services, then listeners are recommended to run a full scan on their DAB digital radio. For advice on how to retune your DAB digital radio go to: http://getdigitalradio.com/dab-news/retune
- Listeners who use their DAB digital radio as an alarm clock set to local services are advised to use a different alarm system to wake up to on Friday 23 October.
- The retune affects local radio services on DAB only and does not affect people who listen to the stations on FM or MW, online or via digital television.
- Some radios that were manufactured before the year 2007 may require a full auto tune or Rest of World scan to find the services. On many radios this is done by simply holding down the auto tune button for five or six seconds. Please refer to the radio instruction manual if this does not work.
- Digital radio coverage in the UK is currently 96% for BBC national stations (extended to 97% by the end of 2015), 90% for national commercial stations, and 73% for local DAB (planned to meet 90% by the end of 2016).
- Over half (50.9%) of the UK population has access to a DAB digital radio (source: Rajar Q2 2015).
- 39.9% of radio listening hours in the UK are to digital platforms (source: Rajar Q2 2015).
- 70% of all new cars have digital radio as standard (source: CAP/SMMT July 2015).
- The benefits of digital radio include extra station choice, easy tuning, track and artist listings, and clear digital-quality sound.