A TELEVISION and radio transmission station is currently on fire in the North York Moors, leaving hundreds of thousands of homes without a signal this afternoon.

Black smoke can be seen billowing from the 314-meter high Bilsdale signal mast on moorland above Helmsley, North Yorkshire.

The Northern Echo:

The mast is primarily used for radio and television transmission and is among the most powerful in the UK.

North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service (NYFRS) said six appliances have been sent to tackle the blaze.

Firefighters said the fire included the tower itself.

NYFRS said in a statement: “North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service are currently in attendance tackling a fire at Bilsdale transmitting centre, which includes Bilsdale mast.

“We currently have six fire appliances and our mobile water bowser as well as command and control assets in attendance.

“Crews are working hard to control the fire in difficult circumstances – it is unclear at this time if any of the centre’s transmitting capability has been affected or the cause of the fire which will be investigated in due course.

“NYFRS ask that members of the public do not go near to the site, particularly as this area has limited access and we need to be able to move vehicles and people around to help fight the fire.”


The Northern Echo:

The mast transmits TV and radio signals to parts of North Yorkshire, Teesside and County Durham and hundreds of households have lost their TV and radio reception this afternoon as a result of the fire.

The BBC's transmitter fault service says that the issue was registered at 1.26pm this afternoon.

Residents in areas including Darlington, Aycliffe, Teesside and some areas in North Yorkshire are reporting problems with their reception.

Homes that receive their signal from the Pontop Pike mast between Stanley and Consett should not be affected. 

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