HC Deb 09 December 1953 vol 521 cc245-6W
113. Mr. G. R. Howard

asked the Assistant Postmaster-General what steps are being taken to clear the third channel in Band III as recommended by the Television Advisory Committee; and how soon will it be available for use as envisaged at the Atlantic City Conference of 1947.

Mr. Gammans

The possibilities of making more channels in Band III available for television are being studied. This involves transferring existing services from Band III to other bands without interfering with services already in or near those bands. The problem is difficult and complicated and it will take some time before we know when a third channel in Band III can be brought into use.

115. Mr. McAdden

asked the Assistant Postmaster-General whether he has yet considered the recommendations of the Television Advisory Committee made to him in May, 1953;and if he will now inform the radio industry of the channels in Band III which will be allocated to an alternative television service.

Mr. Gammans

Yes. The recent White Paper on television policy indicated that the new public corporation would be given the use of two channels in Band III. But the radio industry will need to know more than this before television sets and adaptors can be designed which will be capable of meeting, with only minor adjustments, all likely requirements for some years ahead.

I therefore take this opportunity of saying that if Parliament approves the plans for competitive television it is my noble Friend's intention eventually to make available the whole of Band III for television, to be used either by the British Broadcasting Corporation or the new corporation or both. It would take seven years or so to move some of the existing users in this band.

The radio industry will also need to know what choice of programmes is to be offered to viewers; during the next five years, my noble Friend does not foresee any likelihood of set designers having to cater for more than three programmes in any one area.