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Photos by David Neale, Peter Bigwood, Colin Wiseman, Michael Bryan and mb21 Page last updated: 2015-12-25

Older photos

Whitehawk Hill was built in 1959 to replace the original TV relay for Brighton situated at Truleigh Hill. Links below refer to BBC reports on the selection of Whitehawk Hill and the addition of VHF Radio in 1967. The original tower was replaced in 1983 for the re-engineering of BBC FM radio to mixed polarisation.

This set of photos has been compiled from a number of individual contributions. They pre-date the addition of Channel 5 and DAB but include DTT.

Editor's note: we would be happy to include the dates taken if contributors can provide this.

Prior to DSO, Whitehawk Hill's feed arrangments were: SHF link from Findon for BBC1 and BBC2, ITV line fed, Ch4 fed off-air from Rowridge. Ch5 & Mux A fed via D-Sat, all other DTT fibre fed.

Service Dates:

BBC 405 lines: 5th August 1959 (closed January 1984)
BBC National FM radio: 13th March 1967
BBC Radio Brighton (on 88.1 MHz): 14th February 1968
BBC 1 and BBC 2 UHF: 21st September 1970
BBC Radio Brighton frequency changed to 95.8 MHz: May 1971
ITV UHF: 28th April 1972
BBC Radio Brighton frequency changed to 95.3 MHz: July 1973
Channel 4: May 1983
ILR Southern Sound (on 103.4 MHz): 29th August 1983
ILR Southern Sound frequency changed to 103.5 MHz: 19th November 1986
Radio 1 on FM: 6th December 1990
Classic FM: 11th June 1996
Digital 1 DAB: 27th May 2002
Channel 5: 4th November 2003
BBC National DAB: 7th November 2003
Sussex Coast DAB: February 2004
DSO: 7th and 21st March 2012
Local TV mux: 10th February 2014

The shrouded logs just below the main cylinder transmitted pre-DSO Mux 2. The reason being to create a null in the direction of the Patcham service area, which was co-channel (Ch 50).

This picture (along with photos 3 and 6) is historically interesting as it shows the original Marconi mixed pol panels that were installed in July 1983. These were subsequently replaced in September 2002 by ADC panels.

Whitehawk Hill isn't the only site where this happened; Guildford originally had Marconi panels (installed about the same time, ie 1983) and these too were replaced by ADCs in July 1995.

It's not clear whether this was to allow for the addition of interleaved DAB aerials or whether there is some other technical explanation.

The trough antenna is pointing at Rowridge

This old mast outline (above) shows the somewhat unusual arrangement of the original UHF cylinder at Whitehawk Hill; it was attached to one face of the mast rather than being inserted centrally into the lattice-work. (And the drawing isn't mistaken, it really was like that).

Brighton (Whitehawk Hill) index

Patcham | Truleigh Hill

BBC Report on selection of new Brighton TV relay
BBC Report on VHF Radio Installation

Please let us know if the photographs for this site need updating or improved detail.
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