Christmas comes early in New Forest Village as super-fast fibre broadband arrives

Internet-hungry residents in New Forest Village, Middleton, are celebrating the news that super-fast fibre broadband has arrived just in time for Christmas. 

High-speed fibre broadband is now available to around 200 New Forest Village homes - and local demand for the new technology is already soaring. The upgrade follows a campaign by local residents to be included in 

BT’s £2.5 billion commercial roll-out of fibre broadband across the UK, which has already reached more than 230,000 homes and businesses in the Leeds area. The roll-out is nearing its final stages and due to complete by the end of Spring 2014. 

Bill Murphy, BT’s managing director of next generation access, and representatives from Leeds City Council met with Carl Thomas, a digital champion who led the campaign to bring the community faster broadband speeds, at the new fibre cabinet on Waggon Way to mark the occasion. 

BT is also working with the public sector to reach more Leeds communities through the Superfast West Yorkshire project. 

Superfast West Yorkshire plans to extend high-speed fibre broadband to 97 per cent of households and businesses across the majority of West Yorkshire by the end of Autumn 2015. As well as providing high-speed fibre, the partnership aims to upgrade 100 per cent of premises in this area to speeds of more than 2Mbps. 1 

Carl Thomas, said: “This is the best possible Christmas present for so many people in this area, who previously struggled with very slow internet speeds. People can now work from home for the first time and enjoy the media-rich internet. And in the case of a local deaf family, who can now communicate with relatives via sign language over Skype, this is quite literally life-changing. 

“A super-fast building of the new cabinet has been followed by a super-fast sell-out of connections. BT has already added extra connections to cope with strong demand so all the hard work was certainly time well spent. 

“Going by the demand yet to be satisfied, we'll be keeping BT’s local network business, Openreach, busy trying to keep up with us for a while yet. A great deal of time, energy and money has been spent on this campaign, but seeing the excitement from residents who've managed to place orders and the impatience and enthusiasm from those waiting has made it all worthwhile.” 

Research carried out for BT by Regeneris Consulting suggests that in the next 15 years super-fast broadband could give the economy of a typical town a £143 million boost and create 225 new jobs, 140 new start-up businesses and 1,000 more homeworkers . 

Bill Murphy said: “Our lives are more connected than ever before and increasingly speed is of the essence. Carl and the local community proved to BT and many others just how important it was to them. By working together, and with local and national government, we have been able to make this happen. 

“I have no doubt that the local community will embrace the new connectivity and that it will have a really positive effect on its residents.” 

At home, fibre broadband enables a family to simultaneously download a movie, watch a TV replay service, surf the internet and play games online all at the same time. A whole album can be downloaded in less than 
30 seconds and a feature length HD movie in less than 10 minutes, whilst high-resolution photos can be uploaded to Facebook in seconds.