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Publisher’s local TV launch delayed until spring

A regional publisher will not start broadcasting its local TV station until next spring following the launch of its online version earlier this year.

Norfolk-based Archant, which publishes the Eastern Daily Press and Norwich Evening News, was given a licence to run Mustard TV by Ofcom in September 2012.

The company had been expected to launch its digital TV channel on Freeview Channel 8 this autumn, but a spokesman said it had been delayed because media regulator Ofcom awarded the multiplex licence three months later than planned.

The delay meant the necessary infrastructure could not be completed in time for an autumn launch.

Archant was awarded the licence under Ofcom’s first phase of local TV licensing, which was completed earlier this year, and up to 40 new local TV stations are expected to launch in the next two years throughout the UK.

Ofcom also announced this week that it has awarded licences for local TV services to Cambridge Presents in Cambridge and to Estuary TV for a channel called Yorkshire Coast TV in Scarborough.

Estuary TV was previously awarded a licence to run a local TV channel for Grimsby, which is expected to be launched later this month.

The broadcasting watchdog estimates that the local TV licences could reach around 83,000 homes in Cambridge and 31,000 homes in Scarborough.

Cambridge and Scarborough are part of Ofcom’s second phase of local TV licensing and applications will be considered in the coming months for Bangor, Middlesbrough, Mold, Swansea and York.

Mustard TV crew interviewing local police officers

Fiona Ryder, managing director of Mustard TV, said: “Our vision is for Mustard to be seen as a community asset: a local broadcast service that reflects life and champions community concerns and gives viewers a new voice.

“As part of Archant, one of the UK’s largest independently owned regional media groups, Mustard is uniquely positioned to sustain a local commercial television service for the city and the surrounding area.”

Mustard TV aims to provide access to the latest news, weather and traffic information, along with entertainment shows and documentaries and its flagship magazine programme will be called The Mustard Show.

The channel, named Mustard in honour of Norwich’s long association with Colman’s mustard, will be broadcast to nearly 250,000 people in the greater Norwich area, reaching homes from Cromer to Loddon, Dereham to Acle.

“It will draw on its long-established media resources, especially in the delivery of high-quality journalism across a range of media channels, commercial sales, sponsorship and back office support,” added Fiona.

The Tricaster 8000 vision mixer which will be used in the new Mustard TV studio

TV studios are now under construction in Archant’s Prospect House headquarters in Norwich city centre, where a schedule of nightly news and magazine programmes will be produced.

Mustard news videos will be embedded within relevant pages of the EDP and Evening News websites as well as appearing at

More than 30 Archant Anglia journalists are now trained in news presenting and iPhone video to work alongside experienced videographers to produce news feature packages for the online TV channel.

Archant Anglia publishing director, Bob Crawley, told HTFP earlier this year: “Seeing our journalists rise to the challenge of telling stories through video, as well as the written word, has been very exciting. Already more than 30 of our team have been through a TV news presenting training course and the results have been first class, with some great video shot in Norwich and Norfolk.

“There has been a great deal of enthusiasm from the EDP and Evening News teams and I am looking forward to seeing Mustard TV online becoming an important part of local people’s news and entertainment viewing habit.”


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  • November 1, 2013 at 9:55 am

    “Mustard TV interviewing local police officers”.

    Just how radical and full of new ideas can you get?

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  • November 1, 2013 at 11:28 am

    I am sceptical about this whole local broadcast TV piece. It seems to be the same goldrush as was the rush to buy what in then end became worthless local radio stations.

    With the emergence of Smart TV’s Roku boxes, apple tv etc. Surely one doesn’t need a broadcast channel. It can be streaming over the Internet or collectively via, say, the NS a couple of local newspaper apps can be written for key devices such as Ipad, Iphone, Android, on demand services and Smart Tv’s.

    It is a rush to fools gold.

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  • November 6, 2013 at 2:25 pm

    And in spring, to when will it then be delayed? Second thoughts are being had somewhere.

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  • November 6, 2013 at 3:27 pm

    Gives them something to do once the presses stop rolling.

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  • November 26, 2013 at 10:38 am

    Steerpike is correct,What a lame excuse for realising they`re totally out of their depth and haven`t a clue about the broadcast medium,just look at some of their online Mustard tv reports if you need proof

    This was an attempt to grab revenue from the businesses in a 3-5 mile broadcast reach of Norwich due to falling print revenues and a non existent digital revenue stream,sorry,moving money from print to web doesn`t count as “new revenue”
    This is simply a delaying tactic while they try to get an audience,something that theyve not managed so far with their embarrassing online site.
    if they had any sense theyd take stock of how awful their offering is and throw in the towel now before more money runs down the drain

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