Last week a temporary, 80-metre mast was switched on, restoring TV services to approximately 95 per cent of households across the North East and North Yorkshire. Following testing of the signal from the temporary mast, we now believe around 16,000 homes are still in so-called “not spots” and receive only a poor or no TV signal.
Arqiva is providing households in those specific areas a £50 voucher for Currys which can be spent – in store or online – on an alternative fix to receive free to air TV such as BBC or ITV. People can choose from a range of TV streaming devices, such as the Roku Express HD Streaming Media Player or the Amazon Fire TV Stick Lite.
Letters containing instructions on how to claim the Currys voucher are being sent out this week. Residents will then need to enter their names, addresses and a unique voucher claim code. Any funds left over from the voucher after buying a TV streaming device can be used by the householder.
All of the available streaming devices can be found at www.currys.co.uk and anyone wanting help with choosing the most appropriate device can have a live video chat with Currys experts via ShopLive.
As these devices require WiFi and broadband they will not provide a solution for everyone affected in the specific areas receiving the letters. If that is the case, householders can call 0800 121 4828 to discuss alternative options.
Arqiva have produced a Q&A guide which Community News has reproduced below.
What if I need extra assistance and cannot use / do not want to use the e-voucher?
Please call 0800 121 4828 to discuss other options, including engineer support via Arqiva’s Home Support scheme. This freephone number is prioritised for those over 65, the clinically vulnerable, and other vulnerable people with carers. Please only call if you really have to.
What can I buy?
You can use the e-voucher to purchase any streaming device. Visit www.currys.co.uk to see what is available, or speak to a member of staff in any Currys store. An example of what you can buy is an Amazon Fire TV Stick at £29.99. You will need a good Wi-Fi connection (usually 10Mb or above) and an HD TV to make use of the streaming devices.
If you don’t have these, please call 0800 121 4828 and Arqiva can assess whether they can get you engineer support via their Home Support team.
Where can I go for more information?
If you have any questions about Bilsdale Mast Project Restore, you can find more information at www.bilsdalemast.co.uk
If I claim the e-voucher, can I still get support from Arqiva / Project Restore?
Arqiva will not be providing any additional support to those who claim an e-voucher, even if you don’t end up using it. Therefore please check you’re able to make use of the e-voucher before claiming it.
What if I don’t have the right set up in my home for any of the streaming options? (E.g. no or slow WiFi)
Please call 0800 121 4828 to discuss other options. This freephone number is prioritised for those most vulnerable in society, please only call if you really have to.
What happens if the item I want is out of stock with Currys?
The e-voucher provided is of a high enough value so you can choose from a range of TV streaming devices at different prices. You have until late 2023 to use your e-voucher. The exact expiry date will be shown on your e-voucher. Currys are doing their best to make stock available as quickly as possible. Please keep checking the Currys website for availability.
What if I purchase one of the lower cost devices (e.g. £29.99 for an Amazon Fire TV Stick Lite)?
You are welcome to keep the change, which will be presented to you as a revised gift card balance with Currys.
What if I want a device that costs more than the £50 e-voucher provided?
You will be responsible for paying the difference.
What if I’ve already purchased an alternative device to watch TV through?
Arqiva is unable to reimburse you for money already spent but please keep the e-voucher and spend it on another item of your choice.
What happens if the item I purchase from Currys is faulty?
Please return the item to Currys and ask for a replacement. It’s important to keep your receipt as proof of purchase.
What happens if I move home – do I need to leave any device I’ve purchased in the home?
If you have a landlord, you should discuss it with them. If you are selling the property, you can discuss it with the new owners.
The prices for the media players are different to what you’ve mentioned. Why?
Prices were taken from the Currys website on 12th October 2021. In normal trading practice, prices can change over time.