April 25, 2008

Coventry Analogue Cable Switch–off next week – 3 years ahead of Digital UK Plan!

Writing about web page http://www.digitaluk.co.uk/when

The escalation of my complaint to Virgin Media’s Chief Executive’s office actually produced a reply.
Patricia Wolstenholme called, apologised because there was nothing VM could do then added the surprise.

Virgin Media did not decide when to turn off their analogue cable service in Coventry. This was due to the head end feed service being switched off by BT as a part of the national plan.

Patricia was vague about who was behind this decision.

I can’t receive Freeview or satellite TV due to local topology and close large trees. My home will have a better chance of receiving the Freeview service when the Central region analogue transmitters close down in 2011. This is because the Terrestrial Digital transmitters can then use higher power levels as these will no longer interfere with analogue transmissions.

This interference problem is clearly why the switch-over to digital TV has been planned in such a carefully choreographed manner.

So why has the feed to Virgin Media’s analogue cable customers in Coventry been cut off three years before this regions planned switch-over date?
This could still be a VM commercial decision but I am following my enquiries to Gregory Bensberg, the Ofcom Director responsible for the Digital Switchover, gregory.bensberg@ofcom.org.uk with no response so far.

Virgin Media LogoI have learned that you can get high level, timely answers to complaints from Virgin Media but you have to approach the Cheif Executive’s Office. The Cheif Executive is Neil Berkett, his email address produced the response, neil.berkett@virginmedia.co.uk and that his office’s number is currently 08456505050. It is a shame that I finally find this out in my last week as a customer.

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