HC Deb 18 December 1962 vol 669 c1074
24. Mr. Grey

asked the Postmaster-General when the British Broadcasting Corporation expects to make the necessary change so that a wavelength can be made available exclusively for the North-East.

Mr. Bevins

The B.B.C. tells me that the new arrangements will start on Monday, 7th January.

Mr. Grey

While thanking the right hon. Gentleman for that reply, may I ask him if he is aware that this has been a long campaign, and that the decision to have our own wavelength makes complete nonsense of the 14 years we have been told time and again that it was impossible to have our own wavelength? May I assure the right hon. Gentleman that the decision to have our own wavelength has been widely accepted in the North-East, where people now want to know if they can be compensated for all this inconvenience by being in the first area to have coloured television?

Mr. Bevins

Of course, there has been no delay on the part of the Post Office or the B.B.C. This new wavelength became available through a rearrangement of wavelengths for the B.B.C.'s external services, following upon the decision to close down a transmitter in West Germany.

Mr. Marsh

Is there any reason why this wavelength should not be used for at least part of the time for an experiment in local broadcasting in the North-East to give people the opportunity of saying whether they like it or do not like it?

Mr. Bevins

I think it is more important to do what we have decided to do.

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