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Freeview Light on the Leek (Staffordshire, England) transmitter

first published this on - UK Free TV
sa_gmapsGoogle mapsa_bingBing mapsa_gearthGoogle Earthsa_gps53.102,-2.003 or 53°6'8"N 2°0'11"Wsa_postcodeST13 7LX


The symbol shows the location of the Leek (Staffordshire, England) transmitter which serves 14,000 homes. The bright green areas shown where the signal from this transmitter is strong, dark green areas are poorer signals. Those parts shown in yellow may have interference on the same frequency from other masts.

This transmitter has no current reported problems

The BBC and Digital UK report there are no faults or engineering work on the Leek (Staffordshire, England) transmitter.

Choose from three options: ■ List by multiplex ■ List by channel number ■ List by channel name

Which Freeview channels does the Leek transmitter broadcast?

If you have any kind of Freeview fault, follow this Freeview reset procedure first.

Digital television services are broadcast on a multiplexes (or Mux) where many stations occupy a single broadcast frequency, as shown below.

 V max
C25 (506.0MHz)309mDTG-3200W
Channel icons
1 BBC One (SD) West Midlands, 2 BBC Two England, 9 BBC Four, 23 BBC Three, 201 CBBC, 202 CBeebies, 231 BBC News, 232 BBC Parliament, 250 BBC Red Button, plus 18 others

 V max
C22 (482.0MHz)309mDTG-3200W
Channel icons
3 ITV 1 (SD) (Central (West micro region)), 4 Channel 4 (SD) Midlands ads, 5 Channel 5, 6 ITV 2, 10 ITV3, 13 E4, 14 Film4, 15 Channel 4 +1 Midlands ads, 18 More4, 26 ITV4, 30 E4 +1, 35 ITV1 +1 (Central west),

 V max
C28 (530.0MHz)309mDTG-6200W
Channel icons
56 5SELECT, 101 BBC One HD (England no regional news), 102 BBC Two HD (England), 103 ITV 1 HD (ITV Central West), 104 Channel 4 HD Midlands ads, 105 Channel 5 HD, 106 BBC Four HD, 109 BBC Three HD, 204 CBBC HD, 205 CBeebies HD, plus 1 others

DTG-3 64QAM 8K 2/3 24.1Mb/s DVB-T MPEG2
DTG-6 256QAM 32KE 2/3 40.2Mb/s DVB-T2 MPEG4
H/V: aerial position (horizontal or vertical)

Are you trying to watch these 43 Freeview channels?

the effected channels
the effected channels
the effected channels
the effected channels

The Leek (Staffordshire, England) mast is a public service broadcasting (PSB) transmitter, it does not provide these commercial (COM) channels: 4seven, 5Action, 5STAR, 5USA, Aljazeera English, Blaze, Blaze +1, CBS Reality, Challenge, Channel 5 +1, CITV, YAAAS!, Dave, Dave ja vu, DMAX, Drama +1, E4 Extra, Film4 +1, Food Network, GB News, GREAT! movies, GREAT! movies action, HGTV, HobbyMaker, ITV2 +1, ITV3 +1, ITV4 +1, ITVBe +1, Legend, PBS America, pick, POP MAX, Quest +1, Quest Red, Really, Sky News, Smithsonian Channel, Talking Pictures TV, TCC, That's TV (UK), Together TV, W, Yesterday +1.

If you want to watch these channels, your aerial must point to one of the 80 Full service Freeview transmitters. For more information see the will there ever be more services on the Freeview Light transmitters? page.

Which BBC and ITV regional news can I watch from the Leek transmitter?

regional news image
BBC Midlands Today 2.9m homes 10.9%
from Birmingham B1 1RF, 70km south (174°)
to BBC West Midlands region - 66 masts.
regional news image
ITV Central News 2.9m homes 10.9%
from Birmingham B1 2JT, 70km south (174°)
to ITV Central (West) region - 65 masts.
All of lunch, weekend and 80% evening news is shared with Central (East)

How will the Leek (Staffordshire, England) transmission frequencies change over time?

1984-971997-981998-20112011-137 Mar 2018-

tv_off Being removed from Freeview (for 5G use) after November 2020 / June 2022 - more
Table shows multiplexes names see this article;
green background for transmission frequencies
Notes: + and - denote 166kHz offset; aerial group are shown as A B C/D E K W T
waves denotes analogue; digital switchover was 7 Sep 11 and 21 Sep 11.

How do the old analogue and currrent digital signal levels compare?

Analogue 1-4 1000W
BBCA, D3+4, BBCB(-7dB) 200W

Which companies have run the Channel 3 services in the Sutton Coldfield transmitter area

Feb 1956-Jul 1968Associated TeleVision†
Feb 1956-Jul 1968Associated British Corporation◊
Jul 1968-Dec 1981Associated TeleVision
Jan 1982-Feb 2004Central Independent Television
Feb 2004-Dec 2014ITV plc
Feb 1983-Dec 1992TV-am•
Jan 1993-Sep 2010GMTV•
Sep 2010-Dec 2014ITV Daybreak•
• Breakfast ◊ Weekends ♦ Friday night and weekends † Weekdays only. Leek was not an original Channel 3 VHF 405-line mast: the historical information shown is the details of the company responsible for the transmitter when it began transmitting Channel 3.

Thursday, 26 April 2012
8:15 PM

Does anyone know why I cannot receive all freeview channels in Leek? (No Film4 for example)

Is this just likely to be an aerial issue or something to do with the transmitter here in Leek?

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Duane's 3 posts GB
Dave Lindsay

8:24 PM

Duanne: The transmitter in Leek only carries Public Service channels. This is because the Commercial broadcasters (that don't transmit from Leek) don't wish to spend the money on doing so. This is the case for nearly 1,100 similar small sites nationwide.

See here for an explanation:

Will there ever be more services on the Freeview Light transmitters? | - independent free digital TV advice

If you are lucky, you may be in a location where you can pick up all channels from a main station that carries them.

If you are not, then Freesat may be your best bet for extra channels.

If you supply your location, preferably in the form of a post code or nearby post code, we can look up Digital UK's predictor which should give some idea of the likelihood of you being able to receive the Commercial channels.

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Dave Lindsay's 5,724 posts GB
8:45 PM

Thanks Dave, that explains why retuning etc. didn't make the slightest bit of difference! :(

Our postcode is ST13 6LG.

Trying to use a different transmitter sounds like a good plan as we don't have Freesat, so is there a way to find where our nearest 'main' transmitter is?

link to this comment
Duane's 3 posts GB
Dave Lindsay

9:37 PM

Duane: What can be received can really only be determined with an installer on site. Local obstructions such as buildings and trees can all play their part, but are not factored in to prediction systems.

According to the predictor, Sutton Coldfield is your next best bet. However, whilst its Public Service (PSB) channels (the ones you currently get from Leek) are "good", the Commercial (COM) ones are "variable" and "poor". This looks to me as thought the reason for this difference is down to the fact that the Moel y Parc transmitter uses the same three channels as Sutton Coldfield's Commercial ones, but not its Public Service ones.

Whether it will pose problems can only really be determined by an installer. You may find, for example, that something (e.g. trees) acts reduce the level of signal from Moel y Parc, thereby making reception of the COMs from Sutton Coldfield good. Also, aerials by their design, "reject" signals from other directions (other than to which they face) to a certain degree, so depending on what direction it is from may affect how good a new aerial will be at ignoring the unwanted signal.

Failing that, the COMs from The Wrekin are predicted as "good", although two of its PSBs are "poor". I can't work out which transmitters DUK thinks may interfere here*. If it did prove to be an issue, but the Wrekin's COMs were OK, then you could always combine your Leek aerial with one on the Wrekin in order to get the full complement of channels.

* Maybe Storeton or Ladder Hill are predicted to interfere with two of the Wrekin's PSBs, although they are vertical and Wrekin is horizontal, so the aerial will be at right angles to their signals, thereby helping to reject them.

link to this comment
Dave Lindsay's 5,724 posts GB
Dave Lindsay

9:42 PM

Duane: Sorry, it's probably not the simple answer you were hoping. This is the consequence of the quasi-national networks that the Commercial broadcasters operate. People such as yourself whose native transmitter is a PSB-only one obviously wish to receive all channels if possible. It may be possible, but there may be some length that will have to be gone to such as cost of a new aerial.

You may also find looking around at neighbours' rooves gives some ideas; see what transmitters they are using.

See Digital UK Tradeview for the directions of transmitters:

Postcode Checker - Trade View

Under "Aerial Group" H means horizontal, so aerials will be horizontal and V means vertical, hence aerials will be vertical, same as for Leek.

link to this comment
Dave Lindsay's 5,724 posts GB
Tuesday, 1 May 2012
9:38 PM

Many thanks for the detailed response Dave! :)

I must admit it's a very bizarre situation with this 'lite' transmitter service that I wasn't even aware of until moving to Leek. I consider myself to be someone who is reasonably technically competent and even I have found the whole thing confusing, so I can wholeheartedly empathise with those that are in the same situation and may struggle to understand why we have this separation of services. :/

Anyway, it sounds like it's unlikely I would realistically be able to get the full quotient of Freeview channels down my aerial at my present location so I'm starting to think FreeSat may be the only way forward now.

Kind regards,

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Duane's 3 posts GB
Friday, 27 July 2012
5:20 PM

Why do I keep loosing all bbc channels. They are working one minute and the next I have the screen asking me to retune my channels.

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fiona's 2 posts GB
Dave Lindsay

6:12 PM

fiona: Whilst tuned to BBC One, bring up the signal strength and ensure it says that you are tuned to UHF channel 25 for the Leek transmitter. If it says C24, then it is tuned to Fenton and that is the problem.

If the set has manual tuning, then try and wipe what's stored, probably by running it through the scan with the aerial unplugged, and then manually tune to C25 for BBC, C22 for ITV1, Channel 4 etc and C28 if it is a HD receiver.

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Dave Lindsay's 5,724 posts GB
Thursday, 27 September 2012
12:03 PM

hi is the leek transmiter going to be upgraded to get all freeview channels

link to this comment
norval's 1 post GB
Dave Lindsay

1:24 PM

norval: Unfortunately not.

The Commercial broadcasters (those that don't transmit from the Leek transmitter) don't consider the outlay worth their while. The only thing you can do is investigate the possibility of reception from a full-service transmitter such as Sutton Coldfield. Due to the nature of the area, you may have no chance, but their is always the possibility that an alternative transmitter may be usable at your location.

There are over 1,000 small transmitters like Leek and these serve 8.5% of the population. The Commercial broadcasters achieve coverage of 90% of the population from 81 of the largest transmitters (largest by viewer population). The cost to them to broadcast from the 1,000 plus relays is roughly the same as that of the 81 transmitters they currently use. As they exist purely for profit, they decided not to double their cost of transmission to increase their reach by only 10%.

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Dave Lindsay's 5,724 posts GB
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