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Author: 4NI
Published on 17 October 2012 10:00 AM

BBC Northern Ireland and UTV are to pull together in a live entertainment programme due to be aired on the eve of the digital switchover.

The Magic Box will be a one hour, one-off programme presented by Eamonn Holmes celebrating Northern Ireland’s TV broadcasters and will be transmitted the night before the full switchover occurs on 24 October.

The news comes as the digital switchover gets under way and analogue television begins to close down.

Now, freeview digital channels will be available for the first time to viewers who are still served by local relay transmitters.

When the switchover has been completed, analogue channels will be switched off permanently and the remaining digital channels will become available in all areas.

Northern Ireland transmitters are being switched in two stages in order to give people time to check their equipment.

Viewers who use Freeview, BT Vision or the Top Up TV service will be required to re-tune their digital TV or box at each stage. Viewers with Sky, Virgin Media, freesat or Freesat from Sky do not have to do anything.

Switchover roadshows and advice points will be located across Northern Ireland on 24 and 25 October.

Peter Johnston, Director, BBC NI said: "Television remains an important part of everyday life. It reflects our triumphs and tragedies and brings us together for big community events. Some of what television can do now would have seemed impossible to its earliest pioneers. The small screen is still magical at its best and full of creative possibilities. Our joint programme with UTV is a celebration of our shared television and the beginning of a fully digital age. It’s a moment when we’ll be marking and making a little bit of television history."

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For more information: Call Age NI Advice: 0808 808 7575