Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Transmitter Trail Part 1 - Ashton Moss

As I said in a previous post I visited some transmitter sites around Greater Manchester recently and came across some really interesting places. So I thought I'd share some pictures I took along with some info in a series of parts as there were quite a few.

The Ashton Moss transmitting stations are two independent facilities for medium wave broadcasting about 3/4 of a mile apart on Ashton Moss in Greater Manchester. The first one I visited was the original BBC transmitter which was built for BBC Radio Manchester.

The facility has been used for transmitting Gold on 1458 kHz since 1994, with a power of 5 kW. It consists of 3 free-standing lattice towers, arranged as a directional array, insulated against ground and is one of the few broadcasting stations in Europe using free-standing tower radiators. It is designated "Ashton Moss (West) MF" by Arqiva. At the base of each transmitter sits a small unit that houses the transmitting eqiupment.

The masts can be best viewed from Wren Close, and Rayner Lane in Ashton-Under-Lyne. They're not accessible as they're on private farmland which is fenced off but you can get close enough.

 The other station is Ashton Moss IBA site which was built by the Independant Broadcasting Authority in 1974 for Piccadilly Radio. It still transmits Piccadilly Magic 1152kHz and Asian Sound on 1377kHz today.

It uses a directional antenna consisting of 4 guyed masts, insulated against ground. This antenna has a maximum output toward 250°. In this direction the ERP is 1.5 kW, but the transmitter output is actually 350 Watts. The antenna of this transmitter has a highly directional pattern in order not to interfere with other nearby transmitters on the same frequency.

It is designated "Ashton Moss (East) MF" by owners Arqiva. The best way to view it is from Rayner Lane on Ashton Moss or the M60 where it passes Ashton-Under-Lyne. It is also on private land so I couldn't get nearer.

The stations were constructed and owned by the BBC and IBA as indicated above. Over time, (1974-2007), by a series of asset sell offs, and mergers, both sites are now owned and operated by Arqiva.

Hope some of you found that of interest. Look out for the next part coming soon.

Thanks for reading!

73's, Lewis M3HHY.

Manchester, UK.

1 comment:

  1. I saw them from a train and was intrigued - thanks Lewis.