Trading standards Information and Advice: Switchover Help scheme

TV is going digital all over the UK and is the biggest change in television since the introduction of colour television. In 2012 analogue television will be switched off across the Meridian TV region. If you don’t have digital TV by the time of switchover, you will lose your TV channels.

For older and disabled viewers who may find making the switch difficult, the BBC-run Switchover Help Scheme is at hand to provide everything you need to switch one TV set to digital.

Most eligible people will be asked to pay £40 towards the standard option of help. For eligible people on income-related benefits, it’s free. This includes easy to use equipment, an approved installer to supply and install the equipment, and a 12 month aftercare service including a free helpline.

If you’re 75 and over or eligible disabled, the Help Scheme will write to you directly and in plenty of time to ask if you want help.

The Help Scheme will not cold call. Their CRB checked installers will visit by appointment only and are trained and experienced in serving both older and disabled people. They will take extra time, for example, if you need more time to answer the door. The installers always carry ID and you can arrange for a password in advance. They also encourage anyone who is unsure to call the Help Scheme on 0800 40 85 900 to verify the person at the door.


For further information on the Switchover Help Scheme visit or call free on 0800 40 85 900. Text phone users can call 0800 40 85 936.

If you have any questions about switchover and are not eligible for the Help Scheme you can call the Digital UK advice line on 08456 50 50 50 or visit