Jeremy Hunt's plans for a national rollout of a local TV channel edged a step closer to reality this week, with the unveiling of the 20 towns that will be first to have a television station installed.

The towns have been chosen due to their decent spectrum coverage and also the amount of interest that has been drummed up by operators and audiences in their area.

According to Ofcom, the 20 sites that have been put up for recommendation are: Belfast, Birmingham, Brighton and Hove, Bristol, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Grimsby, Leeds, Liverpool, London, Manchester, Newcastle, Norwich, Nottingham, Oxford, Plymouth, Preston, Southampton and Swansea.

Going local

Now we know what you're thinking: why isn't there a UKvision Song Contest where these 20 towns can compete in a sing-off?

But, to get back to the local TV for local people point, Hunt is hoping that this is a big enough initial spread to make sure that the whole country gets some sort of local issue coverage on Freeview channel 106.

There's another 24 towns which will get a say in the second round of licensing, including: Derry / Londonderry, Malvern and Stratford upon Avon.

The government is keeping to its original plan and is looking for a single multiplex operator to provide the infrastructure for all local TV networks.