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Hello Northern Ireland!

article date: Friday, July 26, 2013

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After over a decade waiting, DAB digital radio listeners in Northern Ireland can now hear the same stations as mainland Great Britain. This follows today's switch on of six new transmitters in the area by Digital One, the national commercial network operator.

As a result, 74% of Northern Ireland's residents will now be in the coverage footprint and able to receive the network's 14 digital radio stations. 10 of these are new to the Northern Irish digital radio dial: Absolute Radio, Absolute Radio 80s, Absolute Radio 90s, BFBS, Jazz FM, Planet Rock, Premier Christian Radio, Smooth Radio, Smooth 70s and Team Rock. The remaining 4 were previously available on a local network and comprise Classic FM, talkSPORT, Kiss and UCB.

The new transmitter sites provide coverage for roughly 1.4 million people and are located at Divis, Carnmoney Hill, Derry/Londonderry, Brougher Mountain, Strabane and Limavady. All six were switched on simultaneously by music stars Dana, Leee John and Neil Hannon at an event being held at Belfast's iconic Ulster Hall.

Bryan Coombes, Commercial Director at Arqiva which owns Digital One, says: "Arqiva supports the development of digital radio throughout the UK and we are delighted to be extending our national digital radio network to Northern Ireland.

For many years Digital One was prevented from broadcasting in Northern Ireland due to a combination of frequency scarcity and regulatory issues. Today's expansion only became possible once these issues were resolved.

If you live in the area you may need to retune your digital radio in order to receive the new services. To do this, press the 'Auto-Tune' or 'Auto Scan' button on your digital radio. It may take a couple of minutes for your radio to update the station list. If you need any more help on retuning, please click here. You can also use view our new transmitters on our interactive coverage map.

The postcode checker will be updated soon to reflect the new Northern Ireland coverage.

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