Disquiet at RTÉ reaching into Northern Ireland
Wed, Dec 30, 2009
MAST AT BORDER: POSSIBLE POLITICAL implications of the erection of an RTÉ transmitter on the Derry-Donegal border concerned Whitehall and Stormont officials in 1979, according to Stormont releases.
The decision to establish a transmitter station at Holywell Hill in Co Donegal on the Border with Derry was raised in a letter from the British Home Office to the Northern Ireland office (NIO) in May 1979.
A home office official E Soden observed that, while the British government had no engineering objection to the transmitter, it proposed to ask “the Éire administration” to limit its power to 5kw in the direction of Northern Ireland.
Even with this restriction, the official noted, RTÉ programmes would be received more widely in Derry and the North West.
The official added: “There is some speculation that this may be the first move by the Irish to extend coverage of their television services to Northern Ireland.”
In further correspondence on the matter Stormont official B D Palmer cited the “grandiose idea” of Conor Cruise O’Brien when minister for post and telegraphs for “an all-Ireland cultural exchange by television”.
Remember seeing RTE pictures on TV near Armoy in N. Antrim in 1960's but unsure of what transmitter they came from. Anyone any ideas? Must say I was delighted to receive RTE from Clermont Carn when its signal boomed into NI in early 1980's and I came from a Protestant background! There was live 1st Division Football, live League Cup Final action and live FA Cup matches which you couldn't get on BBC or UTV! Oh for the good old pre-Sky days!
Interesting one. Considering the spillover from NI into RoI. Gas to see they way they refer to us as "Éire".
One sure sees some strange ideas thrown around in these old Government records.
Wasnt there another proposal by the UK government a few years earlier to try and persuade the Irish government to jam UK TV signals within the Republic for some bizzare reason ?
Thankfully this crackpot idea was thrown out on technical grounds
That would seem a long way from near N. Antrim coast but maybe you're right.
Because RTE were showing matches on a Saturday afternoon. BBC and ITV were not allowed.
So is it a traditional thing that UK stations don't show these matches on a Saturday?
Yes, that's still the case now, 3pm Saturday matches can't be shown on TV in the UK.
I've always found a small number of people in Britain vociferously object to the Irish receiving British television. Could never understand that mentality. Unsurprisingly they are also Tories or UKIP supporters.
^^ Like I said crackpots.
In fairness too them ehhh well just one point so
The UK government would not allow cable services put other services on their network until the mid-1980s therefore RTÉ 1 and later 2 were not available on UK networks while in Ireland our networks were allowed put the 4 UK stations.
However in saying this I am guessing it was not likely that that wasn't their point
What about the 1960's 405 lines relays of RTE mentioned elsewhere ?
If its true that RTE couldnt be carried on cable in Britain before the mid eighties though its a tad bizzare given that East Germany (albeit reluctantly) allowed West German TV onto their cable systems a few years earlier
Illegal. The British Government would not allow any other TV services broadcast in the UK on cable systems, I suppose it was mainly to allow the ITV franchise holders have a stronger audience, HTV might have had issues with STV or Granada or UTV broadcasting into Wales. Cable was purely to enhance reception, for example only areas of the Republic with access to over the air transmissions of UK TV were allowed cable services.
I will find out where I read this piece of information for you.
When I say mid-1980s I should say early to mid-1980s coinciding with the advent of Satellite TV.
My German was never great and is pretty rusty now, caught the odd word, but some of those aerials were definitely too big to be serving one house!
I'm amazed that that was tolerated though, capitalist running pig-dog counter-revolutionary imperialist propaganda was all it was..
Having a large aerial pointing west on your house, you might as well have had a sign up saying "Stasi, please interrogate me"
Wonder when that video was. If there was tolerance shown to western broadcasts, I'm guessing it was very late in the life of the regime... 88 or 89 maybe...