The specialist fabrication of steel to be used to build the Bilsdale Freeview transmitter will be undertaken by local company Severfield plc.
The original Bilsdale transmitter was demolished last year following a fire at the site in August. To restore Freeview TV services in North Yorkshire, County Durham and Teesside to how they were before, a new mast is being built at the same site.
Arqiva, who operates the site, has now awarded key contracts to companies to complete the mast, which is due to go into service during 2023.
Severfield plc, based near Thirsk, has been awarded a contract in excess of £30 million. Its role in helping complete the mast will help many viewers in its community regain full access to all available Freeview channels.
The company will work in conjunction with Arqiva’s lead contractor for the project, Waldon Telecom, which is part of M Group Services.
Until the new mast is ready to go live, a network of temporary transmitter masts, erected in various locations across the region will continue to offer at least the main Freeview channels to the majority of affected viewers.
Paul Donovan, chief executive of Arqiva, said:
“The permanent, replacement mast will eventually see full TV and radio services restored to homes across the region. The build is both an enormous investment and one of the most challenging engineering projects in the UK this year. The new mast will reach almost the height of The Shard in London, making it one of the country’s tallest structures.
It is extremely important that the North Yorkshire economy benefits from the construction of the new Bilsdale Mast, and we have ensured that our main contractor engaged regional partners, like Severfield, when possible.
The expert fabrication of the steel is of critical importance to the project and represents a very large proportion of our financial commitment. I am delighted that a respected and local company, Severfield, will be undertaking this.”
Rob Evans, divisional managing director for Severfield Commercial & Industrial, added:
“Our involvement in the Bilsdale Mast project is of significant importance to us, as it will be of great benefit to the local community around our head office site in Thirsk, restoring television and radio services to the area. Our team of top-class engineers and fabrication experts from our sites across the north of England, are committed to making sure the tight timescales are met and we are delighted to be working in partnership with Arqiva and Waldon Telecom on this iconic engineering project.”
Donnie Whyte, M Group Services Telecom Division commercial director, said:
“We are pleased to be working with Arqiva, Severfield and other local partners to deliver this complex engineering project on time. We are including local contractors, bringing employment to the area for the duration of this project. Waldon Telecom, which is part of M Group Services, provides specialist acquisition, design and construction services to broadcasting and mobile clients.”
[Image: planning document drawing of the replacement mast at Bilsdale]