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London Digital Switchover completes tonight: no TV from midnight to 6am

London’s analogue and digital TV channels will go off-air tonight as Digital Switchover in the capital completes – but digital TV will be back in the morning.

London TV relay transmittersAnalogue BBC1, ITV1, Channel 4 and Channel 5 will all go off-air forever tonight for viewers in Greater London using the Crystal Palace transmitter and its relays.

All Freeview signals in London will also go off-air for up to six hours as engineers make their final tweaks to the transmitter network.

The BBC Freeview multiplex which was boosted to high power on April 4 will be the first to return during the night, but may be subject to interruption.

Crystal Palace should go live with all Freeview signals at high power on their new frequencies at 6am, along with relays in Guildford, Hemel Hempstead, Hertford and Reigate carrying Freeview for the first time.

London’s remaining relays will go on air with Freeview throughout the day, and the entire switchover should be complete by 6pm.

Freeview, BT Vision and Top-Up TV viewers will need to retune when their Freeview signals return – although all Freeview HD boxes and TVs, and many recent products, should retune automatically.

Sky, Freesat and Virgin Media viewers don’t need to do anything and won’t see any interruption to their TV signals.

Viewers in the Meridian area using the Rowridge transmitter will also need to retune as the London switchover kicks off a final reshuffle of frequencies. Meridian is halfway through its Switchover campaign, with transmitters in Heathfield, Tunbridge Wells, and Hastings starting their switch on May 30, and Dover and Bluebell Hill on June 13.

The final UK Digital Switchover regions will go in the autumn, with Tyne Tees starting on September 12 and Northern Ireland/UTV on October 10.

If you’re not sure which relay you’re using, have a look at UKfree.tv’s excellent map, which we’ve embedded above.

And if you’ve left it really late to switch, you can still read Recombu’s guide to Digital Switchover.

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