Sky Sports removed from analogue cable

Friday, June 19 2009, 10:36 BST

By Andrew Laughlin

Virgin Media has removed the three Sky Sports channels from its analogue cable as part of an ongoing shut down of the transmission over its cable network.

The majority of the cable operator's customers currently receive digital TV services, but there remains a small proportion still watching an analogue signal.

A region-by-region programme was launched a year ago to transfer customers receiving analogue services to new digital TV packages.

From the start of this month, this has resulted in the remaining analogue TV users no longer being able to receive Sky Sports 1, 2 and 3 over their existing service.

In a statement, a Virgin Media spokesperson said the change has affected just 0.1% of the firm's TV customers.

"The majority of customers affected by this change will now be able to take advantage of digital TV services including Sky Sports and Sky Movies and enjoy over 165 digital TV channels, access to Virgin Media's pioneering on demand services - with over 4,600 hours of TV including 500 movies - as well as ultrafast fibre optic broadband," said the spokesperson.

According to Virgin, all customers affected by this change were contacted well in advance about the process of transferring to a digital service.

The spokesperson added: "A tiny percentage of customers who may be unable to receive digital cable services in their area will still be able to receive the rest of their analogue TV channels as before.

"Any customers that were paying for these channels will no longer be charged for this service."

Sky turned off its analogue satellite service back in 2001, while the UK's analogue terrestrial transmission is due to be shut down by 2013.