Super-fast fibre broadband goes live in Bradford city centre, Horton bank, Queensbury and Laisterdyke
Upgrade hailed by Bradford Chamber as 44,000 local homes and businesses set to benefit from BT’s £2.5 billion roll-out
Super-fast broadband has arrived in Bradford city centre, Horton Bank, Queensbury and Laisterdyke BT announced today. Thousands of homes and businesses now have access to the high-speed technology – and this figure will increase to more than 44,000 as engineers complete the local upgrade in the weeks ahead.
Today, the BT investment was welcomed by Sandy Needham, chief executive of Bradford Chamber, who described it as great news. She said: “Super-fast fibre broadband will benefit both local residents and businesses in all of these locations. Broadband is an essential part of Bradford’s present and future. It’s vital that we embrace this latest generation of technology in order for our local economy to remain competitive.
“Better, faster communications boost businesses, helping them grow, and create more jobs. What’s more, local residents can enjoy faster browsing and downloading at home. This is great news and I look forward to fibre being rolled out across the rest of the Bradford area.
Bradford city centre, Horton Bank, Queensbury and Laisterdyke follow other parts of Bradford such as Bingley, Haworth and Shipley where fibre broadband is already available as part of BT’s £2.5 billion fibre programme. By the end of Spring 2014 around 175,000 homes and businesses in the Bradford area will be able to access fibre broadband on the BT network.
BT is also working with the public sector to reach more communities in Bradford 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
Tom Keeney, BT’s regional director for Yorkshire and the Humber, said: “Our roll-out of fibre broadband continues at a world class pace in the Bradford area with Bradford city centre, Horton Bank, Queensbury and Laisterdyke the latest places to benefit. More than two million homes and businesses across the UK are already using our new fibre network. Local residents now have the opportunity to join them and find out for themselves why there’s such a buzz about fibre broadband.
“Whatever you’re doing online, you can do it better and faster with fibre. Whether it’s shopping, downloading music and video, watching TV, social networking, studying or researching homework, once you’ve switched to fibre you’ll never look back. Outside the home, it also has huge potential for public services and city businesses.
“Businesses working better with fibre tell us it’s helping them in a wealth of ways, from day to day activities like downloading software, collaborating with clients and moving large data files around to big business decisions like expanding the workforce or introducing better quality IT services at less cost.
“BT is not just building a national communications network fit for 21st century Britain; we’re doing it at speed, making fibre broadband available to around 80,000 more premises a week.
BT’s fibre footprint currently passes more than 17 million UK homes and businesses. It’s due to pass two-thirds of UK premises – around 19 million premises – by the end of Spring 2014, at least 18 months ahead of the original timetable. 2
Openreach, BT’s local network business, is primarily deploying fibre-to-the-cabinet (FTTC) technology, where the fibre runs from the exchange to a local roadside cabinet. In addition to download speeds of up to 80Mbps, FTTC also delivers upload speeds of up to 20Mbps 3 — and could deliver even faster speeds in the future.
Openreach has also started to make fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) technology, where the fibre runs all the way to the home or business, commercially available on demand3 in certain areas where fibre broadband has been deployed, and plans to expand access in due course. FTTP-on-demand offers the top current download speed of 330Mbps 4.
According to the regulator Ofcom, the current average UK residential broadband download speed is 14.7Mbps.
Fibre broadband at home means everyone in the family can do their own thing online, all at the same time, whether it’s downloading music in minutes or watching catch-up TV; streaming HD or 3D movies in the few minutes it takes to make popcorn; or posting photos and videos to social networking sites in seconds. Fibre improves the quality of online experiences and supports exciting new developments in internet services.
The benefits are also considerable for businesses, which can do much more in far less time. Firms can speed up file and data transfers, collaborate with colleagues and customers on conference or video calls or swap their hardware and expensive software licenses for files, processing power and software from cloud computing. Staff can work as effectively from home as they would in the office.
Unlike other companies, Openreach offers fibre broadband access to all service providers on an open, wholesale basis, underpinning a competitive market. For further information on Openreach’s fibre broadband programme visit www.superfast-openreach.co.uk
Notes to editors
1 The Superfast West Yorkshire project is part financed by the European Regional Development Fund Programme 2007 to 2013. The Department for Communities and Local Government is the managing authority for the European Regional Development Fund Programme, which is one of the funds established by the European Commission to help local areas stimulate their economic development by investing in projects which will support local businesses and create jobs. For more information visit www.communities.gov.uk/erdf
2BT’s deployment plans are subject to an acceptable environment for investment.
3These are the top wholesale speeds available from Openreach to all service providers; speeds offered by service providers may vary.
4Openreach will levy an installation charge for FTTP on demand. It will be up to service providers to decide whether they pass that on to businesses or consumers wishing to use the product.
Due to the current network topography, and the economics of deployment, it is likely that some premises within selected exchange areas will not initially be able to access fibre-based broadband. Openreach is considering alternative solutions for these locations.