Work underway on temporary TV mast to restore signal to majority of homes after Bilsdale fire

Work has begun on a temporary TV mast in North Yorkshire after a major fire knocked out signals for thousands of homes.

By Mark Payne
Tuesday, 14th September 2021, 6:08 pm
Updated Wednesday, 15th September 2021, 7:10 am

Viewers, including within Hartlepool, have been without the majority of channels since the fire to the Bilsdale transmitter on August 10.

Service provider Arqiva has now started work on a temporary mast with a team of around 100 workers moving onto the site on Monday.

The 80m-high mast is expected to restore Freeview TV signals to an area covering over 90% of households which got their signal from the previous Bilsdale mast.

Work has begun on the temporary mast.

It is due to take three weeks to build.

Adrian Twyning, chief of operations at Arqiva, said: “We are working 24/7 to restore services to as many people as possible across the North-East and North Yorkshire.

"This is complex work, involving multiple agencies and highly skilled teams. We are fully committed to the task at hand.”

The construction team are working at pace to clear the site and put foundations in place for the transmission equipment.

Arqiva said its priority is now on working with organisations across the affected area including local councils, housing associations and charities to reach and support those who may still be left without a signal after the temporary mast is built.

The most vulnerable people affected will be prioritised, it added.

The Bilsdale mast is the tenth tallest structure in the UK at 1,030 feet tall.

According to Freeview, more than 500,000 households are served by it and provides digital terrestrial TV along with digital and FM radio signals to the area.

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