Sky Scottish was a short lived satellite television channel operating on the analogue Sky TV service for 18 months (between 1 November 1996 and 31 May 1998).
The service was a joint venture between British Sky Broadcasting and ITV franchise STV owners SMG plc (now STV Group plc), and was aimed at Scots living outside of Scotland who would not otherwise be able to receive Scottish programming such as that transmitted within Scotland by Scottish Television, Grampian Television or BBC Scotland. It broadcast between 6.00 pm and 8.00 pm.
Despite BSkyB and SMG entering into a seven-year contract to run the service, Sky Scottish was closed down after just 18 months. Its closure was explained as the channel having failed to meet its financial targets. Speaking about its demise, the managing director of SMG at the time, Donald Emslie, described the service as having “been a valuable learning experience” for his company. SMG’s finance director, Gary Hughes, stated that the service had shown “it is very difficult to access a Scottish audience outside Scotland”, but also that Scottish audiences wanted more home-grown programmes.
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