Community scheme brings high-speed broadband to Cheshire housing development

Government subsidy scheme helps fund fibre installation

A partnership between local residents and BT is to make high-speed fibre broadband available to around 100 homes on the Kingswood Park estate in Frodsham, Cheshire.

Openreach,the local network business which is part of BT Group, will install new fibre optic cabling and a new green road-side cabinet equipped with the latest Fibre-to-the-Cabinet (FTTC) technology as part of BT’s Community Fibre Partnerships scheme.

Speeds of up to 80Mbps will be available for the first time to the Kingswood Park community from a wide range of broadband service providers.

The partnership is benefitting from funding through the Government’s Better Broadband Subsidy Scheme and will see local residents get the high-speed service by Spring next year.

The Better Broadband Subsidy Scheme allows households and businesses with internet speeds of less than 2Mbps, who are not included in any current programme to rollout high-speed fibre broadband, to get funding for better broadband using any technology. The Kingswood Park residents were awarded £350 per eligible household for a new fibre broadband network.

The cost of bringing fibre broadband technology to residents in the community has been covered by the Government scheme and Openreach’s investment.

Dr Peter Simpson, who led the local community group to campaign for faster broadband, said: “BT approached us proactively to help find a way to upgrade our slow broadband and I’m very pleased that we have been able to work together to come up with a solution to vastly improve on our current poor broadband speeds.

“Not only do we have families living on the development who need high-speed fibre broadband to watch internet TV, shop online and do homework, but we also have people working from home needing it to enable them to do their jobs efficiently. The arrival of high-speed broadband will make a big difference to all our lives.”

Kieran Charleson, BT’s regional director for the North West, said: “We have been working closely with the people of Kingswood Park to agree this funding solution to bring superfast fibre to the local community and it’s great news that the contract has now been signed and the service will be up and running by Spring 2018. We’re keen to have conversations with other communities who might be able to benefit from this approach.”

Kim Mears, Openreach’s managing director for infrastructure delivery, said: “Partnerships like this help us to bring high-speed connections to challenging areas that broadband providers struggle to upgrade alone.

“More than 92 per cent of the UK can access superfast speeds today, and we’re committed to making fibre broadband as widely available as possible in the UK. That’s why we’re investing in hundreds of similar projects across the UK, working in partnership with business and residential communities to deliver faster speeds from a wide choice of competing internet service providers.

“It’s great to be able to work with communities like Kingswood Park in Frodsham to find a broadband solution.”

For more information on community fibre partnerships with BT, visit www.communityfibre.bt.com


For further information

Enquiries about this news release should be made to the BT Regional Press Office on 0800 085 0660 All news releases can be accessed at our web site: http://www.btplc.com/News

Notes to editors

About Openreach

Openreach is the UK’s leading digital infrastructure provider.

Its 32,000 employees are responsible for building and maintaining millions of miles of fibre and copper cables that connect every home and business in the UK to local telephone exchanges. Openreach operates and maintains this network to deliver a range of wholesale services for more than 560 retail providers, who in-turn provide telephony, broadband, TV and data services to more than 30 million consumer and business customers throughout the country.

Openreach is a highly regulated business, with more than 90 per cent of its revenues generated from services that are regulated by Ofcom. Any company can access its products under exactly the same prices, terms and conditions.

Over the last decade, Openreach has invested more than £10bn into its network and is currently building the UK’s largest fibre broadband footprint. This technology is available to more than 26 million homes and businesses, with tens of thousands more gaining access each week.

Openreach is a wholly owned and independently governed division of the BT Group. For the year ended 31 March 2016, it reported revenues of £5.1bn.

For more information, visit openreach.co.uk

About BT

BT’s purpose is to use the power of communications to make a better world. It is one of the world’s leading providers of communications services and solutions, serving customers in 180 countries. Its principal activities include the provision of networked IT services globally; local, national and international telecommunications services to its customers for use at home, at work and on the move; broadband, TV and internet products and services; and converged fixed-mobile products and services. BT consists of six customer-facing lines of business: Consumer, EE, Business and Public Sector, Global Services, Wholesale and Ventures, and Openreach.

For the year ended 31 March 20161, BT Group’s reported revenue was £19,012m with reported profit before taxation of £2,907m.

British Telecommunications plc (BT) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of BT Group plc and encompasses virtually all businesses and assets of the BT Group. BT Group plc is listed on stock exchanges in London and New York.

1The results for the period have been revised to reflect the outcome of the investigation into our Italian business. Detail of which is set out in our third quarter results announcement published on 27 January 2017. This financial information is unaudited.

For more information, visit www.btplc.com