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Local TV in Brighton: Latest TV awarded licence from Ofcom

Today we got an early look at the shape of Local TV to come, in Brighton at least. Latest TV is the name of the local TV channel which Brightonians will be soaking up on Freeview channel 8 next year.

Latest TV has its roots in the Latest Homes property site and magazine. From there the Latest empire has grown to include a live music venue, the Latest Musicbar and Brighton Lights, currently on YouTube, which perhaps gives us the best idea of how Latest TV will shape up.

In a chat with Latest TV’s business development director Angi Mariani, Recombu Digital was told that the YouTube channel is “just the start of what’s to come.”

Local TV in Brighton: Latest TV gets granted licence from Ofcom

Latest TV will feature the talents of local film makers and animators who will be able to showcase talents in two half-hour slots. There will also be coverage of local bands, with the Latest Musicbar acting as the studio for live performances. Mariani aims to turn this slot into “Brighton’s own MTV,” shining the spotlight on performers and comedians as well as bands.

Mariani told us to expect “documentaries, animation, short films” alongside The Vote, a current affairs/Have Your Say programme. Brighton Lights, presented by Val Aviv (above), will plus coverage of local events such as Pride.

The indicative schedule submitted to Ofcom shows there will be slots for children’s TV, local news as well.

Ofcom expects that Local TV will be live in the UK by the end of 2013 at the latest. More licence awards will be announced over the coming months, so we’ll soon be able to get an accurate picture of how Local TV will look across the land.

What’s Local TV all about?

Local TV is an ongoing project to bring local news, entertainment and services to at least 21 cities in the UK, with the possibility of this expanding to a further 28 areas.

When will Local TV be coming to Brighton?

There’s no set date just yet but its expected that Local TV won’t be live in the UK until 2013. Brighton is one of the initial 21 locations which has been earmarked for Local TV rollout.

Where will Latest TV cover?

Ofcom’s coverage map, below, gives an estimate of how Latest TV’s coverage will reach its audience from the Whitehawk Hill transmitter (click on the image to view at full size).

Brighton & Hove indicative TV coverage

Will I have to retune my Freeview box?

Local TV will be coming to Freeview channel 8 when it launches in Brighton, so you will need to retune in order to get the new channel.

Can I get Local TV on Sky, Virgin Media or Freesat?

There’s still a debate as to where Local TV will appear on Sky’s programme guide and how else viewers will be able to get it.

Sky proposes that Local TV channels will be accessible via the yellow button on its remote, instead of having to give up the 8th position on its programme guide.

Virgin Media is in favour of delivering a Local TV through an app on its TiVo boxes, providing access to Local TV streams from all over the country.

Freesat is currently deciding where it would place Local TV channels in its programme guide. Freesat broadcasts to much wider areas of the country than Freeview, making fine-tuning granular broadcast regions a challenge. However the new Free Time from Freesat service could deliver Local TV over a broadband connection in a similar way to Virgin Media’s app proposal.


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