Abergavenny transmitting station

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Abergavenny transmitting station is located in Monmouthshire
Abergavenny transmitting station
Height of mast 46 metres (151 ft)
Grid reference SO244126
Built 1969
Relay of Wenvoe
BBC region BBC Wales
ITV region ITV Wales

The Abergavenny transmitting station was originally built by the IBA in 1969 as a relay for BBC and ITV VHF 405-line analogue television. It consists of a 46 m guyed lattice mast carrying the aerials at the top. This structure was built on a 440 m hill known as Gilwern Hill overlooking the towns of Gilwern and Abergavenny in Monmouthshire, South Wales. The band III VHF television feeds were provided off-air from St. Hilary and Wenvoe, both near Cardiff.

In 1973[1] the site was enhanced to transmit UHF analogue colour television. The UHF television feed came via a two-hop route from Wenvoe, via the Ebbw Vale repeater.

The 405-line VHF television service closed across the UK in 1985, but according to the BBC's and IBA's transmitter list[2] and the BBC's internal "Eng. Inf." magazine,[3] Abergavenny was due to close early - in the third quarter of 1982.

Currently, the hill's transmitters provide UHF digital terrestrial TV, VHF FM radio and DAB digital radio. The transmission station is currently owned and operated by Arqiva.

Freeview digital terrestrial TV was not available from this transmitter before the digital switchover process began at Wenvoe, with the first stage taking place on 31 March 2010. The second stage was completed on 27 April 2010.[4]

Channels listed by frequency[edit]

Analogue television[edit]

23 April 1969 - 28 September 1973[edit]

Abergavenny transmitter initially provided BBC and ITV 405-line VHF television to the mid Usk valley area which is strongly shielded by local hills from both the Wenvoe transmitter and the St. Hilary transmitter.

Frequency VHF kW Service
56.75 MHz 3H 0.03 BBC One Wales
204.75 MHz 11H 0.1 HTV Wales

28 September 1973 - Third Quarter 1982[edit]

625-line UHF television in colour came to Abergavenny. This was with the station acting as an indirect off-air relay of Wenvoe.

Frequency VHF UHF kW Service
56.75 MHz 3H 0.03 BBC One Wales
204.75 MHz 11H 0.1 HTV Wales
615.25 MHz 39 1 BBC One Wales
663.25 MHz 45 1 BBC Two Wales
695.25 MHz 49 1 ITV1 Wales

Third Quarter 1982 - 31 March 2010[edit]

The 405-line VHF TV services were shut down after 15 years. From then onwards TV transmissions were on UHF only. Channel 4 launched across the UK on 1 November 1982. Abergavenny (being in Wales) transmitted the S4C variant.

Frequency UHF kW Service
615.25 MHz 39 1 BBC One Wales
639.25 MHz 42 1 S4C
663.25 MHz 45 1 BBC Two Wales
695.25 MHz 49 1 ITV1 Wales (HTV Wales until 2002)

Analogue and digital television[edit]

31 March 2010 - 27 April 2010[edit]

The UK's digital switchover commenced at Abergavenny on 31 March 2010. Analogue BBC Two Wales on channel 45 was first to close, and ITV Wales was moved from channel 49 to channel 45 for its last month of service. The new BBC A mux started up in 64-QAM and at full power (i.e. 200 W) on channel 49 which had just been vacated.

Frequency UHF kW Operator System
615.25 MHz 39 1 BBC One Wales PAL System I
639.25 MHz 42 1 S4C PAL System I
663.25 MHz 45 1 ITV1 Wales PAL System I
698.000 MHz 49 0.2 BBC A DVB-T

Digital television[edit]

27 April 2010 - present day[edit]

The remaining three analogue TV services were closed down. Digital multiplexes took over their original frequencies at full power and in 64-QAM encoding mode from the start.

Frequency UHF kW Operator
642.000 MHz 42 0.2 Digital 3&4
666.000 MHz 45 0.2 BBC B
698.000 MHz 49 0.2 BBC A

13 March 2013[edit]

As a side-effect of frequency-changes elsewhere in the region to do with clearance of the 800 MHz band for 4G mobile phone use,[5] Abergavenny's "BBC A" multiplex will have to be moved from channel 49 to channel 39.[6]

Frequency UHF kW Operator
618.000 MHz 39 0.2 BBC A
642.000 MHz 42 0.2 Digital 3&4
666.000 MHz 45 0.2 BBC B

Analogue radio (VHF FM)[edit]


Frequency kW Service
88.7 MHz 0.02 BBC Radio 2
90.9 MHz 0.02 BBC Radio 3
93.1 MHz 0.02 BBC Radio 4
95.2 MHz 0.02 BBC Radio Wales
98.3 MHz 0.02 BBC Radio 1
103.5 MHz 0.02 BBC Radio Cymru
105.2 MHz 0.02 Real Radio (Wales)
107.8 MHz 0.02 Sunshine FM

Digital radio (DAB)[edit]

6 June 2011 - present[edit]

Frequency Block kW Operator
225.648 MHz 12B 0.5 BBC National DAB
227.360 MHz 12C 0.2 MXR Severn Estuary


External links[edit]

Coordinates: 51°48′27″N 3°05′50″W / 51.807362°N 3.097191°W / 51.807362; -3.097191