“but come what may, we are switching in 2012”

Both RTÉ and the BBC report the signing of a memorandum of understanding between the UK and Irish governments “which provides a framework for continuing co-operation on broadcasting issues on the island of Ireland.” Specifically, on what will happen after the digital switchover in 2012. The memorandum is available here [pdf file]. From the RTÉ report

[Irish Minister for Communications Eamon Ryan] said: “At a time when there’s a lot of attention on North-South negotiations, it’s important for people to be able to access culture, sports, news and know what’s happening North and South. Having the BBC available in the South gives us a clear link with what politicians in the North are doing. Having TG4 and RTÉ available in the North is equally important so we have a common understanding on the island of what we have as a common culture.”

Adds Here’s the NIO statement.An Irish Times report adds

Negotiations with a number of companies to provide the €100 million digital system in the Republic – which have run into some difficulties – are still continuing, “but come what may, we are switching in 2012”, Mr Ryan said.

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  • Greenflag

    If Ryan doen’t ensure we can get the BBC in the Republic he can forget his political career .

  • socaire

    Surely you mean the 26 counties??

  • Greenflag

    socaire ,

    feck off and don’t be so insular . This TV here is serious business -we don’t want fecking politics intervening !

  • Dazzler

    So we can expect an all ireland digital box with channel layout looking like

    101. RTE 1
    102. RTE 2
    103. TV 3
    104. TG 4
    105. Setanta Sports
    106. 3e (formorly channel 6)
    107. BBC1 NI
    108. BBC2 NI
    109. UTV
    110. Setanta Sports 1

    A basic package like that would do me.

  • Cletus The Slack Jawed Yokel

    It does indeed show a common culture, consisting of British & American TV shows…

  • georgieleigh

    That line up is available to just about everyone in the republic right now.
    In digital.

    And with a few HD channels thrown in.

    And RTE News.

    And after you buy the initial box, it’s all free.

    As usual the politicians and regulators are about 5 years behind the technology.

  • socaire

    Sorry, Grrreeenflag, but living on an island it’s hard not to be insular. According to BT tonight, all stations will be available on the whole island except TV3.

  • Greenflag

    socaire –

    Learn to swim -it’ll broaden the mind 😉

  • slug

    Will Channel 4, Channel 5, BBC 3, BBC 4, BBC News 24 etc also be available in ROI?

  • slug

    More importantly, will they be able to vote on X Factor and Britain’s Got Talent, Strictly, etc? Interactive TV is boring if you can’t vote. Our Jedward would have got to the final if Dublin could have voted!

    ITV 2 availability in ROI will be important for the link in so you can switch across to the Xtra Factor, once X Factor has ended. Etc.

    You guys will love it.

  • feismother

    We get RTE/TV3 and the RTE radio channels on our television via BT Vision. The signal was turned off for a few weeks but came back on yesterday.

  • Brian Walker

    Dazzler’s little list certainly wouldn’t do me if I lived in NI. I’d want the news channels and the digitals too. In London, I mourn the non-launch of an Irish diaspora channel. Maybe time to revive it to coincide with analogue switch-off? Hopes are faint though.

  • slug

    Brian obviously you get all the same stuff in NI that you do elsewhere in the UK. Its just in the ROI one is to be limited to the few he meintions.

  • Pete Baker


    “Dazzler’s little list certainly wouldn’t do me if I lived in NI.”


    But I’d point out that currently the digital Freeview options in NI, at least here in the yurt, are fairly comprehensive.

    My main gripe at the minute is that, although I can get a strong analogue signal for RTÉ’s output, their digital signal is non-existent.

    That and the BBC’s proprietarily attitude to their output.

  • Mack

    It does indeed show a common culture, consisting of British & American TV shows…

    There’s not a single British tv show on RTE 1 or RTE 2 tonight from 6 O’Clock onwards. There are daytime repeats filler stuff alright – but nothing at prime time. (The last British show – there are 3 or 4 on off-peak daytime television – is Eastenders finishing at around 3).


  • Mack

    Dazzler’s list is presumably what should be available freely (licence fee excepted).

    Most southerners receive the British channels either through subscriptions to UPC or Sky or via their aerials / freeview.

  • Pete Baker

    Adds Here’s the NIO statement.