A review into the fire at the Bilsdale mast has revealed how much the infrastructure company spent on restoring services and supporting residents following the incident.

Ofcom have published their incident review following the Bilsdale mast fire which saw hundreds of thousands without signal.

Organisations delivering broadcasting services need to urgently review their plans to avoid a similar failure in the future, the review has found.

Darlington and Stockton Times: Alex Harper Operations Director at Severfield, Arqiva Chief Exec Paul Donovan, Kevin Hollinrake MP and Donnie Whyte M Group Services Telecom DivisionCommercial Director at the Severfield site where the new Bilsdale mast is being made Picture: SARAH CALDECOTTAlex Harper Operations Director at Severfield, Arqiva Chief Exec Paul Donovan, Kevin Hollinrake MP and Donnie Whyte M Group Services Telecom DivisionCommercial Director at the Severfield site where the new Bilsdale mast is being made Picture: SARAH CALDECOTT

Arqiva, site operators of the Bilsdale Mast, was found to have “moved quickly” in order to restore coverage.

The review also revealed how much the infrastructure company has spent in order to replace the mast.

Arqiva estimated that it spent £40 million including viewer support, replacement services and the subsequent building of the main replacement mast.

Overall the report found that there were delays in getting a temporary transmitter up and running on the Bilsdale site.

It also found that information provided to affected viewers and listeners was initially very general and there were delays in providing appropriate targeted support for affected households, which could have been avoided.

Darlington and Stockton Times: Arqiva CEO Paul Donovan Picture: SARAH CALDECOTTArqiva CEO Paul Donovan Picture: SARAH CALDECOTT

Ofcom have recommended that, in the future, organisations should carry out internal reviews to ensure that lessons are learned.

The reviews should consider how well the organisation can recover services in the event of a major incident, as well as those in place to support and communicate with affected viewers and listeners.

Paul Donovan, CEO at Arqiva, has said that he “welcomes the report” and will be working with broadcasters to “act on its recommendations.”

He added: “It is a thorough evaluation of the response to the fire. Together with broadcasters, we were able to give Ofcom input on the technical matters under consideration.

Darlington and Stockton Times: Arqiva CEO Paul Donovan at Bilsdale mast Picture: SARAH CALDECOTTArqiva CEO Paul Donovan at Bilsdale mast Picture: SARAH CALDECOTT

“The key recommendations are aligned with the work we have been undertaking since the incident.”

Mr Donovan added that the company had also already implemented “a range of measures to enhance out fire mitigation, fire protection and disaster recovery procedures and capabilities.”

He said: “We will continue to review these areas as we work with the broadcasters to implement the recommendations from Ofcom.”