Channel 4 has announced that subtitles have begun to return to its programmes on Freeview, Sky, Virgin Media and All 4.

The broadcaster previously announced earlier this week that subtitles, sign language and audio description may not return to some of its services until the middle of November after its output was repeatedly disrupted following a technical issue that arose last month.

Red Bee Media, which handles playout services for Channel 4 and 5, previously revealed that the “activation of the fire suppression system” last month at its broadcasting centre triggered audio and picture problems.

Channel 4 new HQ
(Victoria Jones/PA)

Channel 4 has previously been criticised by the National Deaf Children’s Society and broadcasting watchdog Ofcom over the lack of subtitles.

However on Friday, the broadcaster said in a statement the number of programmes with subtitles will increase “over the coming days”.

Programmes that will carry subtitles include the Great British Bake Off, The Last Leg and Gogglebox, as well as Channel 4 News and the coverage of Formula One racing.

Channel 4 said it had achieved this “by changing the way our channels are broadcast”.

Subtitles remain unavailable for Freesat viewers.

Audio description and sign language services will remain unavailable “until we move to the new system that is being built and tested”, Channel 4 said.