Project Restore welcomes planning permission for new mast
Arqiva, the company which operates Bilsdale TV Mast, today welcomed the granting of planning permission by the North York Moors National Park Authority to replace the mast which was damaged by fire last August and subsequently demolished.
The news means that work on the permanent structure can begin in the next few weeks. The new Bilsdale Mast will be over 300 metres tall, just under the height of The Shard in London, making it one of the UK’s tallest structures.
More than 98% of homes in the region have had some TV services restored since the fire on August 10th.
Next week, a new, 80-metre high interim mast at Bilsdale is expected to be switched on, which will improve services for more than 100,000 homes and be more robust in bad weather. Some residents will need to retune their TVs as a result of the switchover. A smaller number of homes, mainly in east County Durham, are likely to lose their Freeview services, and engineers will repoint their TV aerials free of charge. Residents who lose their service or who need help or advice can call a dedicated freephone helpline on 0800 121 4828 or go to bilsdalemast.co.uk.
Adrian Twyning, Director of Operations at Arqiva, said: “We’re very pleased that planning permission has been granted, and grateful to those who have worked so hard to make it happen. We have worked closely with the North York Moors National Park to provide and process a high amount of detailed information and assessment to be able to facilitate the permission being issued within a record time of 10 weeks. We extend thanks to all those involved in supporting us in the urgent need to replace broadcast coverage levels to the north of England.”
“Building the permanent, replacement mast will restore full services to homes across the region and is an enormous investment. While construction is happening, we will continue to deliver fixes for residents in a variety of ways, including interim masts and relay sites. We are sorry for the disruption which the fire has caused, but we are making progress, as today’s announcement shows.”