HC Deb 16 March 1960 vol 619 c1274
5. Mr. Woof

asked the Postmaster-General his plans for improving the television service in Dunston and district with direct services, instead of allowing a sub-standard rediffusion service to develop.

Mr. Bevins

Neither the B.B.C. nor the I.T.A. has any present plans for improving reception in Dunston. It is well within the service area of B.B.C. and I.T.A. transmitters, but the district is low-lying and intervening hills spoil reception. In most cases the use of carefully adjusted multi-element aerials will overcome the local difficulties of B.B.C. reception.

With regard to the second part of the Question, there have been no local complaints to me about the relay service being given in the Dunston area.

Mr. Woof

Is the Minister aware that a great number of people in this area are paying licence fees for reception which is deplorable? Is there any reason why there should not be research into this matter to enable people to get value for money?

Mr. Bevins

I think that the hon. Member's Question refers to direct services instead of rediffusion services. As the House knows, the B.B.C. is pressing on with its satellite station scheme as fast as it can. It has no immediate plans for this part of the country, but I shall be very happy to draw its attention to this situation.

Mr. Ness Edwards

Is the Minister aware that in the shadow areas it is impossible for the non-wired service to give satisfactory reception? Will he consider, in conjunction with the B.B.C, whether a wired service should be started by the B.B.C. in areas of this type, which cannot otherwise be served?

Mr. Bevins

The hon. Member for Blaydon (Mr. Woof) is complaining about the poor quality of the wired service provided by this company.