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Digital Broadcasting: Celtic Languages

Volume 464: debated on Monday 15 October 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what plans he has to ensure spectrum allocation for (a) Gaelic and (b) Welsh language service on digital terrestrial television after the digital switchover. (156859)

The BBC announced earlier this year its intention to launch a Gaelic language channel—the Gaelic Digital Service (GDS)—on digital terrestrial television in Scotland, to be run as a partnership between BBC Scotland and Seirbheis nam Meadhanan Gaidhlig (Gaelic Media Service). A public value test into this proposed service is currently ongoing.

A Welsh language service—S4C—is already provided on digital terrestrial television in Wales, and multiplex capacity will be available for S4C to continue to provide that service.

At present, therefore, it is intended that both Gaelic and Welsh language services will be provided on digital terrestrial television after digital switchover.