Tacolneston transmitting station

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Tacolneston
Tacolneston TX mast.jpg
165m (pre-DSO) mast at Tacolneston
Tacolneston transmitting station is located in Norfolk
Tacolneston transmitting station
Height of mast 165.0 metres (541 ft)
Grid reference TM131958
Built 1954
BBC region BBC East
ITV region ITV Anglia

The Tacolneston transmitting station is a facility for both analogue and digital VHF/FM radio and UHF television transmission near Tacolneston, 11 miles (18 km) southwest of Norwich, Norfolk, England.

It includes a 149.0 metres (489 ft) tall guyed steel lattice mast, which was built in 1956 (completed in late September/early October that year). On top of the mast is located the UHF television transmitting antenna, which brings the overall height of the structure to 165.0 metres (541 ft).[1]

The station's original mast, built from early 1954, 61 metres (200 ft) tall and first broadcast television transmissions, albeit temporary, from February 1955[2] and VHF (FM) broadcasts from 6.35pm on Tuesday 30 April 1957.[3]

The transmission site is located at 52° 31′ 3.9″ North, 1° 8' 19.3" East[4] (National Grid Reference: TM131958[5]). In July 1989 it was reported that the transmitting station cost almost £500,000 a year to run.[6]

The current mast has an average height of 221 metres above sea level.[7] It is now owned and operated by Arqiva, but was owned by the BBC before they privatised their transmission department prior to 1997.

Arqiva (formerly National Grid Wireless) announced, on 6 August 2007,[8][9] that they plan to replace the current 165 metres (541 ft) mast with a new 206.1 metres (676 ft)[1] mast in order to ensure good digital TV reception across East Anglia after digital switchover, which took place in the area in November 2011. Arqiva also plan to replace the original transmitter hall at this site as it has now reached the end of its useful life.[10][11] Work has been completed on the new structure, and for the moment there will be 3 structures (2 masts & a lattice tower) on the site. The old 165m mast is expected to start being dismantled in 2013.

Services listed by frequency[edit]

Analogue radio (FM VHF)[edit]

Frequency kW Service
89.7 MHz 125 (V) + 125 (H) BBC Radio 2
91.9 MHz 125 (V) + 125 (H) BBC Radio 3
94.1 MHz 125 (V) + 125 (H) BBC Radio 4
99.3 MHz 125 (V) + 125 (H) BBC Radio 1
101.5 MHz 125 (V) + 125 (H) Classic FM

Digital radio (DAB)[edit]

Frequency Block kW[12] Operator
218.640 MHz 11D 1.4 Digital One
225.648 MHz 12B 5 BBC National DAB

Digital television[edit]

Digital transmissions became at least 10 times stronger in power after the digital switchover, and their frequencies were reorganised.[13]


Frequency UHF kW Operator System
618.000 MHz 39 100 Arqiva B DVB-T
642.000 MHz 42 100 SDN DVB-T
666.000 MHz 45 100 Arqiva A DVB-T
706.000 MHz 50 100 BBC B DVB-T2
746.000 MHz 55 100 BBC A DVB-T
778.000 MHz 59 100 D3+4 DVB-T

From April 2014 two extra HD muxes are being broadcast on UHF 31 & UHF 37 along with a local TV service (Mustard TV) using an interleaved frequency on UHF 57 (QSPK 8K 3/4 8.0mb/s)

Frequency UHF kW Operator System
554.000 MHz 31 10 Com 7 DVB-T2
602.000 MHz 37 10 Com 8 DVB-T2
762.000 MHz 57 10 LNR DVB-T


In May 2013, BBC B will move from UHF 62- to UHF 50, and Arqiva B from UHF 50 to UHF 39-.[14]

Before switchover[edit]

Frequency UHF kW[15] Operator
730.166 MHz 53+ 5 SDN (Mux A)
769.833 MHz 58- 5 BBC (Mux B)
786.000 MHz 60 10 Digital 3&4 (Mux 2)
794.000 MHz 61 5 Arqiva (Mux C)
810.000 MHz 63 10 BBC (Mux 1)
818.000 MHz 64 5 Arqiva (Mux D)

Analogue television[edit]

Tacolneston switched to digital-only television transmissions in November 2011;[16] analogue BBC Two transmissions ceased on 9 November and two weeks later, on 23 November 2011,[16] the other 4 channels ceased analogue transmissions.

Frequency UHF kW Service
719.25 MHz 52 4 Channel 5
743.25 MHz 55 250 BBC Two
775.25 MHz 59 250 ITV1
799.25 MHz 62 250 BBC One
823.25 MHz 65 250 Channel 4

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b South Norfolk District Council planning application, January 2008
  2. ^ "Eastern Daily Press". Eastern Counties Newspapers (Archant). 15 August 1997. 
  3. ^ "Eastern Daily Press". Eastern Counties Newspapers. 1 May 1957. 
  4. ^ "Flash Earth". Retrieved 2007-05-30. 
  5. ^ Television Transmitting Stations Handbook. BBC & ITC. January 1994. 
  6. ^ "Eastern Daily Press". Eastern Counties Newspapers (Archant). 11 July 1989. p. 9. 
  7. ^ Civil Aviation Authority. "Radar Vector Areas in UK Airspace" (PDF). p. 22. Retrieved 2006-11-29. [dead link]
  8. ^ "Eastern Evening News". Retrieved 2007-08-17. 
  9. ^ "Eastern Daily Press". Archant Newspapers. 7 August 2007. 
  10. ^ "MB21 Transmission Gallery (News)". Archived from the original on 2007-09-29. Retrieved 2007-08-17. 
  11. ^ "Internet Archive (MB21 Transmission Gallery News)". Archived from the original on 2007-09-29. Retrieved 2010-01-02. 
  12. ^ Radio Listeners Guide 2010
  13. ^ "Ofcom - DSO Transmitter Details: Anglia Region" (PDF). Retrieved 2010-09-30. 
  14. ^ http://www.ukfree.tv/fullstory.php?storyid=1107052033
  15. ^ Television Viewers guide 2009
  16. ^ a b "Digital UK - Tacolneston". Retrieved 2010-09-30. 

http://www.ukfree.tv/txdetail.php?a=TM131958

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 52°31′4″N 1°8′20″E / 52.51778°N 1.13889°E / 52.51778; 1.13889