|Launched||9 February 2004|
|Owned by||Northern Visions Limited|
NvTv (Northern Visions Television) is a local community television station based in the city of Belfast, which, until the digital switchover in October 2012, broadcast on UHF channel 62 (799.276 MHz). It still, however, streams its programming online. It is operated by the Northern Visions media and arts project, and although some staff are employed by the station, most involved are volunteers. NvTv is the only local community station in Northern Ireland.
The station was launched at 5.00pm on Monday 9 February 2004, with the first programme aired being a film called 'The School Trip', which was made by students at the Fleming Fulton School in the city. Initially NvTv broadcast just one hour of programming on weekdays which was repeated on loop, with shows repeated again at the weekend; however, the station has now expanded its content and covers community and other events in and around the Belfast metropolitan area, as well as other commissioned programmes.
NvTv was originally granted a four year Restricted Service Licence by the Independent Television Commission, and is operated by the long established, non-profit Northern Visions media and arts centre in the Cathedral Quarter of the city. The station's facilities are used by 200 community-based organisations, as well as a range of individual actors and filmmakers. On 10 October 2012, the channel was also granted a 12 year local TV licence to broadcast on digital terrestrial television, with Ofcom hoping that some channels may be on air before the end of 2013, although the channel is still not broadcasting on the platform as of May 2014.
Northern Visions was established in 1986 as a Channel 4 franchised workshop under the ACTT Workshop agreement, with a strong emphasis on inclusion and the value of bringing both communities together to meet a common goal. The project is based on Donegall Street and provides a variety of training schemes for amateurs to break into the media sector through bi-annual workshops.
The project provides support for independent media production across Northern Ireland and until 2012 has been funded through grants from bodies such as Belfast City Council, Arts Council of Northern Ireland and Northern Ireland Screen, while the community television journalists were initially paid under the EU's Peace II Programme. Fundraising and donations also serve as a way of boosting the small budget of the project and station.
The community television journalists provide a key part of the project’s strategy by coordinating the training schemes and producing a wide variety of community programming about groups and areas of interest, with a special focus on those who can be classed as being marginalised.
NvTv's programming operates on a loop system and streaming live through its website.
Most of the station’s programming comes through once off short films and documentaries, although there are several regular shows including, the current affairs programme, 'Agenda'; 'Kick out the Jams', a music show named after the MC5 song of the same name; the 'Experiences of Childhood' series; the 'Book Show'; and feature interviews titled 'A Few Moments With...'.
- "Ofcom awards further local TV licences". Ofcom. 10 October 2012.