Sheffield Switchover

Switchover Information for Sheffield

Sheffield Homes SwitchoverWe’re taking random areas of the UK to see what the options are like for digital TV, both the channel availability for Freeview and the availability of Sky, Virgin TV packages and BT Broadband/BT Vision services – this page focuses on some of the areas of Sheffield where Sheffield Homes have properties.

The Sheffield and Emley Moor Transmitters

The Sheffield transmitter in the Yorkshire TV region will switch to digital in 2011. The transmitter, with its relay Totley Rise, covers around 120,000 homes, while Emley Moor is estimated to cover around 1,550,000 households with its 48 relays, also switching in 2011. Digital UK predict that in the Yorkshire region 99% of homes will be able to receive the basic 17 or 18 channels after switchover and 97% will get more channels on top of that. Already 93% of households in the area can receive digital TV through an aerial, so coverage in this area is very good even before switchover.

We’ve taken three postcodes in areas where there are Sheffield Homes properties, S11 8FD in Leverton Gardens, S14 1PJ in Callow Mount and S6 5JF in Roscoe Court. These are the results we got using the BT, Virgin Media and Sky postcode checkers.


BT Postcode Checker

In the BT postcode checker the message was similar for all of our test postcodes – a good result showing decent broadband speeds. Leverton Gardens came back with the highest maximum speed;

“For Postcode S11 8FD on Exchange SHEFFIELD
We’ve just wwwed your line and can confirm your line supports the UK’s most complete broadband package, BT Total Broadband. We estimate your maximum connection speed to be up to 6.0 Mbps (Megabits per second).”
The message for Callow Mount was the same but with a slight variation in speed;
“For Postcode S14 1PJ on Exchange INTAKE
We’ve just wwwed your line and can confirm your line supports the UK’s most complete broadband package, BT Total Broadband. We estimate your maximum connection speed to be up to 4.0 Mbps (Megabits per second).”
Finally Roscoe Court
“For Postcode S6 5JF on Exchange WADSLEY BRIDGE
We’ve just wwwed your line and can confirm your line supports the UK’s most complete broadband package, BT Total Broadband. We estimate your maximum connection speed to be up to 3.5 Mbps (Megabits per second).”
All three of the messages end with the following disclaimer;
“The actual speed you get could be lower and is dependent on several factors such as whether you have any internal home wiring, our network management policy and the number of people using the Internet at the same time. Speeds are generally lower in the evening at peak times.”
What does this mean? BT broadband is available to these postcodes and will be fast enough to be able to deliver BT Vision – you need a broadband speed that averages at least 2Mbps for this. It’s advisable to check your own postcode to get your particular line speed, but if you are already a BT broadband customer or are considering BT then BT Vision would be a very good choice for digital TV in this area.

Virgin Media

Virgin Postcode Checker

The general rule with cable services like Virgin is you are likely to be able to get it in built-up areas and less likely in rural areas, so with Virgin Media more than any other service we recommend checking your own postcode here – it can vary from street to street.

However, all of our test postcodes came up with the same message – “Your home is not in a Virgin Media cable area so you can’t get our fibre-optic cable services, but you can get our National services. National services up to 16Mb! Our National broadband and phone services are available to all. Unlike our cable services, they’re delivered down your phone line – in just the same way other companies offer it.”
What does this mean? As mentioned above, Virgin Media availability can vary from one street to the next, but in these two cases it means you can get Virgin Media broadband down your phone line but no cable TV services – they offer a Freeview box for £40 but this is not connected to the broadband (the way it would be with BT Vision), it’s just a Freeview box like any other you would get from a shop.


Sky Postcode Checker

The message for all 3 postcodes was the same; “Great news, Sky Broadband is currently available in your area. Based on the postcode you have entered there is a good indication you are in a Sky Broadband network area, where Sky Broadband Base, Mid, and Max are currently available. In order to join Sky Broadband you will need an active BT compatible phone line.”
What does this mean? It means the whole range of Sky TV packages (broadband, TV and phone) is available in these areas.


Freeview Channel Availability

S11 8FD in Leverton Gardens and S6 5JF in Roscoe Court are both in the Sheffield transmitter area and Digital UK predicts good reception for 50 Freeview channels both now and after switchover in 2011. A retune of equipment will be required during switchover – more information on that here – and some channels may require an aerial upgrade. S14 1PJ in Callow Mount is served by Emley Moor transmitter and will have a more gradual introduction – 31 channels are currently available with good reception and 8 with variable reception, rising to 39 channels at good reception during switchover until finally all 50 will be available when switchover is complete.
Here are the channels – ‘EM’ in brackets after a channel tells you that this channel will not be available in the Emley Moor transmitter area until after switchover;

Free Channels Available

  • BBC1
  • BBC2
  • ITV1
  • 4
  • Five
  • ITV2
  • BBC3
  • BBC4
  • ITV3
  • Sky3
  • 4+1
  • More4
  • 4 Music (EM)
  • Dave
  • Dave Ja Vu (EM)
  • Virgin 1
  • TMF (EM)
  • ITV4
  • E4, E4+1
  • ITV2+1 (EM)
  • Film4 (EM)
  • Fiver
  • Yesterday (EM)
  • Quest
  • CBBC
  • CBeebies
  • CITV
  • QVC
  • Ideal World (EM)
  • BidTV
  • Gems TV
  • Lottery Xtra (EM)
  • Community Channel
  • Teachers TV
  • Netplay TV
  • Super Casino
  • 121 Dating
  • BBC News
  • BBC Parliament
  • Sky News
  • CNN
  • Sky Sports News
  • Russia Today (EM)

Subscription Channels Available

  • Top Up TV Anytime 1, 2, 3 & 4

Please note that our switchover pages refer to the switchover dates and channel information at the time of writing, which is generally pre-switchover, and for most areas circumstances will have since changed.

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Virgin Value Bundle
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