In a series of replies received from Channel 5 by readers of joinfreesat (thanks guys/gals), it would appear that Channel 5 have made it very clear that they intend to launch Fiver (called 5* from 7th March) and Five US (called 5 USA from 7th March) on Freesat later this year.
They seem to be suggesting that the only problem standing in their way is the lack of narrow beam capacity on Astra2D (not a Freesat issue), but expect this to be resolved later this year when 1N becomes available.
We suspect given that C4 have found a way around this and intend on launching C4HD on Eurobird (despite the requirement for narrow beam capacity), Channel 5 might follow suit with what ever agreement C4 have with ofcom, so we might see these channels sooner rather than later, but for now it seems later this year is what they are sticking to.
Here is a copy of the reply received by reader astra2d:
Due to a lack of narrow beam capacity, we have been unable to make FIVER (5* from 7th March) and Five USA (5 USA from 7th March) available on this platform since it was launched. However, additional capacity on Freesat is likely to become available later this year and we are planning to make the channels available once this is in place.
We have no specific word on Channel 5 HD, so suspect that might be stuck in a contract with BSkyB for the short term future atleast.