Welsh facility group Barcud Derwen is producing live streams of National Assembly for Wales sessions for on demand viewing at senedd.tv.

Barcud Derwen is responsible for delivering the broadcast infrastructure within the Welsh Assembly and will run the streaming application to provide an average of 35 hours of content per week.

To do so it purchased five Digital Rapids StreamZ encoders, one for use in the main Senedd chamber, plus an encoder in each of the three committee rooms. The fifth has been purchased for a proposed fourth committee room, expected to be up and running in time for the start of the autumn term in September.

The StreamZ encoders are used for live streaming and to capture archived meetings from tape. One audio channel captures the verbatim language of the meeting while the second channel offers English translation when the spoken language is Welsh. Taking advantage of the encoder’s capability to automatically FTP files once capture has ended, archive clips of all recorded meetings are available to visitors of senedd.tv just a few minutes after the end of sessions.

Digital tagging of content, provided by Barcud Derwen, allows users to search by topic, date, or by Assembly Member. All meetings are tagged by Assembly staff and sorted by agenda item, and links back to the transcripts of the meetings are also provided to allow users to view any items of interest in the easiest and quickest way.

“We’ve been the host broadcaster for the National Assembly of Wales since 1999 and see huge potential in extending our service to a new audience via the Internet,” says Rhun Roberts of Barcud Derwen. “I had no hesitation in choosing Digital Rapids’ StreamZ systems as the live and transcode encoders for senedd.tv, and we have had 100% reliability from them.”