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4. Future Service Aspirations

The analogue TV relay building programme was completed a number of years ago.  There are no plans to build any more analogue TV relays now that the UK is planning for digital switchover.

At the time of digital switchover, the powers of the existing Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT i.e. Freeview) stations will be significantly increased to improve coverage.  In addition, DTT will be added to all of the remaining TV relay stations so that analogue coverage will be substantially replicated by DTT at the time of switchover.

The BBC has declared an aspiration to launch a ‘Free Satellite’ service with the other Public Service Broadcasters.  Approval of this service is subject to a ‘Public Value Assessment’ and the desire is to launch this service in 2007.

The coverage of the BBC’s service on Medium Wave Radio is essentially complete.  The BBC has no plans to expand its Medium Wave coverage.

The coverage of the national network for analogue FM Radio is around 98% of the UK population and the network is now substantially complete.  The BBC has no plans to roll out its national FM network further in Dorset.

The BBC has declared its aspiration to introduce a new local FM service to cover Dorset in its document ‘Building Public Value’ [2].  The launch of this service is dependent on the outcome of the licence fee settlement and news is expected on this soon.

The BBC has also declared in ‘Building Public Value’ [2] its aspiration to continue to roll out its national DAB Digital Radio coverage from the current 85% to 90% population coverage.  This would expand the BBC’s national DAB coverage in Dorset.  Again the decision on this awaits the licence fee settlement which is expected soon.

Ofcom intends to licence a new commercial local DAB multiplex to serve West Dorset.  The BBC intends to take up its reserved allocation on that multiplex when it is rolled out.


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