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To retain our licence BCTV was required to "get on air" before 30 June 1999.
CTV 41 BENDIGO became Victoria's first (and, at that time, Australia's only) operational regional community television broadcaster when transmission into Bendigo began at 5.15pm on Saturday, 19 June 1999, using a 120 watt transmitter and Yagi broadcast antenna supplied by A.R.F.C.Pty Ltd.
For the first 7 seven days CTV 41 BENDIGO transmitted a test pattern consisting of colour bars and our call-sign. From Saturday, 26 June 1999, a 3 hour tape of vision, music and information on programs to be broadcast and on how to contact us at CTV 41 BENDIGO was continuously broadcast on a loop.
Our licence to broadcast was due for renewal from 1 July 1999 and at 1.00pm on 30 June 1999 BCTV was advised by the Australian Broadcasting Authority that our licence HAD NOT been renewed because we were not broadcasting programs. Regular programming was to commence on 17 July 1999 and the ABA had been advised of this. Our transmitter has been switched off.
We requested the Australian Communications Authority to review the decision of the ABA and the ACA has now requested the ABA to return BCTV's licence for a short period to give BCTV the opportunity to start broadcasting programs.
We expect the ABA will act on the ACA recommendation after the Commonwealth Government has made a decision on the future of community television in the digital era. On 16 February 2000, Cabinet deferred making this decision for the third time since December 1999.
The members of BCTV remain confident that we can regain the licence to transmit on the analog UHF channel 41 in Bendigo, however we now propose to establish a new structure called "Access Television Bendigo Ltd" (a company limited by guarantee) to hold the licence for Central Victoria after the introduction of digital television from 1 January 2001. BCTV will continue as a program provider to Access TV Bendigo and other Access Television broadcasters.
For information about joining Bendigo Community Television Inc, please click here.
THE WILLIAM ANGLISS (VICTORIA) CHARITABLE FUND
Transmission equipment for CTV 41 BENDIGO is supplied by