Wiltshire residents living in the “Bermuda Triangle of lost TV signal” are frustrated after years of their favourite shows being interrupted.

This is what Cllr Jacqui Lay, the Wiltshire representative for Purton and Braydon, labelled the area stretching across Swindon, from Blunsdon to Royal Wootton Bassett, up towards Cirencester and back towards Swindon via the A419.

She claims she and others in the surrounding towns and villages, including Royal Wootton Bassett, Cricklade, Purton, and Blunsdon, have been living with poor signal for years.

The Purton resident said: “Lots of people all around the area have had problems getting a signal for years and years, it’s a big issue.

“It’s quite a big area where the transmitters aren’t doing their job… it’s really annoying when you’re watching a really good film but can’t see the end of it.

“Personally, I live a busy life and like to relax at the end of the day watching TV, but I sit down and there’s nothing decent available to watch.”

The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald: Cllr Jacqui Lay trying to get a signal on her TVCllr Jacqui Lay trying to get a signal on her TV (Image: Cllr Jacqui Lay)Other locals who are affected by the issue have vented their frustration at the constant interruptions to their favourite programmes.

Earlier this month Len Goodhew, from Leigh near Cricklade, claimed he and many of his neighbours had not been able to watch anything for two weeks due to intermittent outages.

He said: “Something is terribly wrong because sometimes it comes and it goes but other times you just can’t watch anything.

“We like to watch Strictly Come Dancing but for the last couple of weeks every time we’ve tried it’s just packed in, so we’ve missed it.

“We know lots of people who have had the same problem so it can’t be the antenna, it’s erratic to say the least.”

Cllr Lay says she will sometimes get weeks or months of good reception before the problems reoccur, causing her to lose channels.

The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald: Cllr Jacqui Lay trying to get a signal on her TVCllr Jacqui Lay trying to get a signal on her TV (Image: Cllr Jacqui Lay)While she is unsure of the cause of the issue, she claims it is having a negative effect on residents.

She added: “A lot of elderly residents haven’t been able to watch TV, they sit there quietly thinking it’s their aerial but it’s much more widespread than that.

“Those who can’t get newfangled TVs are left with nothing to watch when winter comes.”

Ofcom told this paper that consumers experiencing TV interference should get in touch with their provider to check that the fault is not with their service.

If this does not resolve the issue, residents are advised to contact the BBC.

A Freeview spokesperson explained that poor signal is often caused by atmospheric conditions.

They said: “Freeview is carried by radio signals which lie in a part of the radio spectrum which can be affected by certain weather conditions. Affected by a complex combination of humidity, temperature and atmospheric stability in certain stable weather conditions, signals can travel further.

The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald: Cllr Jacqui Lay and her TVCllr Jacqui Lay and her TV (Image: Cllr Jacqui Lay)“Where the conditions occur over a large geographical area, signals from different transmitters can arrive in areas where they are not intended to be received, resulting in interference to reception of the wanted transmitter.

“The reception issues are therefore down to the physical properties of TV signals and the weather’s impact on these.”

Freeview revealed that the conditions causing interference can take place at any point in the year, but are most likely to occur in spring and autumn or on cold and foggy winter mornings. 

A spokesperson added: “The transmitter network is carefully planned to minimise this time-varying interference so far as is possible, but unfortunately, reception difficulties may be experienced from time to time.”