Digital UK hires regional support ahead of switch

Digital UK has created a regional PR roster as it seeks to ensure every British household is digital-enabled before the analogue TV switch-off in 2012.

Weber Shandwick Manchester, Good Relations Wales and Cornwall-based Deborah Clark & Associates will cover the Granada TV region in the North-West, Wales and the West Country respectively. The regions will make the switch in 2009.

The first area to switch to digital will be the Border TV region in 2008. PR here has been handled by WS's Edinburgh office since September last year.

All regional agencies will be managed by Fishburn Hedges, which runs Digital UK's national PR and public affairs work, having been hired earlier this year (PRWeek, 6 April).

FH's London-based director Rachel Jones said media relations campaigns in the regions ‘will help to ensure everyone knows that switchover is happening, and what they need to do to prepare'.

The challenges for each campaign differ greatly depending on the area - from informing groups in sparsely populated rural regions about the switch, to targeting ethnic minorities who are largely located in cities.

Campaigns will target community groups and organisations - such as mobile libraries and representatives of ethnic minorities - which, Digital UK hopes, will ‘filter' the information to people locally.

Digital UK is an independent, not-for-profit body funded by broadcasters including the BBC, ITV and Channel 4.

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