The shutdown of analogue channels is nearing the final stages as London and surrounding areas saw the loss of BBC Two in the first phase of the digital switchover.

The move is the first stage of the switch-off of the analogue signal in these parts, with the rest of the old-school signals going on April 18.

While it might bring annoyance to those who find re-tuning a TV a chore (or have to install a new digibox or buy a new TV to continue viewing) the switch does finally bring Freeview channels to 400,000 people in a 'digital blackspot'.

Deborah Bain, London Manager for Digital UK, said this morning: "This is the biggest day for TV in London since Crystal Palace started broadcasting 56 years ago."

Better picture, more channels

"From today, thousands of viewers across the capital and beyond can receive more channels and better quality pictures.

"Anyone who still hasn't switched to digital should prepare for 18 April when the last analogue channels will be permanently switched off. We urge everyone to get ready now – don't leave it until the last minute."

It's estimated around one in ten households in London isn't ready for the switchover, and the Digital UK website has already seen over 18,000 hits since the move.

If you want to keep up to date with news from the switch (such as how it's going, what the engineers are thinking or just need more people to follow) then check out the organisation's Twitter feed – we'll warn you, it's mostly about digital TV switchovers.