Press Office

Monday 21 Apr 2014

Press Release

BBC One HD Channel to launch 3 November and EastEnders to go HD on Christmas Day

BBC One HD

The BBC today announces that BBC One HD will launch at 7pm on Wednesday 3 November across all HD platforms: Freesat channel 108, Freeview channel 50, Sky channel 143 and Virgin Media channel 108.

The new high definition (HD) channel kicks off with a series of programmes made in true HD: The One Show, followed by Wallace And Gromit's World Of Invention, the new series from award-winning Aardman Animations, as well as some food for thought with Nigel Slater's Simple Suppers and Jimmy's Food Factory.

The Apprentice and Film 2010 will also show in HD that evening.

It is also announced today that the BBC's award-winning continuing drama EastEnders will broadcast in HD for the first time on Christmas Day, allowing viewers to catch all the drama in Albert Square in even more vivid detail.

EastEnders follows Holby City, which made the move to HD on 18 October. It will be shown on the BBC's existing HD channel, until BBC One HD launches in November.

The new HD channel will simulcast a network version of the BBC One schedule, with the majority of peaktime programmes in HD, including The Apprentice, Strictly Come Dancing, Children In Need, Antiques Roadshow, Countryfile, The Graham Norton Show and The Royal Variety Show.

Jana Bennett, Director BBC Vision, said: "Whether it is seeing the flicker of irritation on Lord Sugar's face in a boardroom showdown or watching the beads of sweat fly from the dancers on Strictly, BBC One HD is the biggest sign yet that HD viewing is now part of the mainstream."

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Danielle Nagler, Head of HD and 3D, says: "It's incredibly exciting to begin the official count down to the launch of the new channel and we're delighted to be launching with BBC One's popular flagship programe, The One Show.

"The arrival of the UK's favourite channel in HD – as a second HD channel from the BBC – will increase the range and choice of HD programming we can offer the ever-growing HD audience.

"The existing BBC HD channel has been hugely successful. It will continue to show programmes from across all BBC channels, to allow all HD viewers to find programming they can enjoy. And it will now have space to accommodate more hours of new HD programmes from the BBC."

Bryan Kirkwood, executive producer, EastEnders, says: "Christmas Day in Walford is traditionally turkey, tinsel and turmoil for the residents of Albert Square. This year will be even more spectacular with viewers having the opportunity to watch the festive drama unfold in HD for the first time."

Those shows which aren't made in HD – including EastEnders up until Christmas Day – will still be on BBC One HD but will be upscaled*.

The BBC HD Channel will continue to bring programming such as Top Gear, Wimbledon, children's programming, golf coverage, great drama, comedy, music and factual programmes from BBC Two, BBC Three and BBC Four throughout the week.

We can also announce that this year we'll bring viewers some of the last races of this year's Moto GP in HD as a trial run for the sport on the channel.

The autumn launch is the first stage in delivering BBC One in HD. The majority of programmes in the BBC One network evening schedule will be available in HD at launch and, by 2012, it is expected that the vast majority of all BBC One titles across all hours will be in HD.

In time, the channel will evolve to bring all programmes, news and current affairs to viewers in the nations and regions.

You can follow the progress towards the channel launch on twitter @naglerHD

BBC One HD will be available – from 3 November – on Freesat channel 108, Freeview channel 50, Sky channel 143 and Virgin Media channel 108

BBC HD will be available – from 3 November – on Freesat channel 109, Freeview channel 54, Sky channel 169 and Virgin Media channel 187.

Notes to Editors

*Upscaling means that the number lines in the standard definition (SD) picture are effectively doubled – from 576 to 1080 – to fill the high definition (HD) screen. As the original material is still SD, the quality of the picture will not be equivalent to HD.

Images are available on the BBC Pictures website.

LG

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