Wales hits 500,000 fibre broadband roll-out milestone

Rhyl becomes latest North Wales town to go live; 
news welcomed by Denbighshire County Council 

High-speed fibre broadband is now available to more than 500,000 homes and businesses in Wales with nearly 75,000 in the North, BT announced today. 

The milestone was reached as the roll-out continues to gather pace with Rhyl the latest community to go live. More than 13,000 premises in Rhyl, will be able to take advantage of the technology once engineering work has been completed. 

Rhyl will follow more than fifty towns and cities in Wales which are already benefiting from BT’s £2.5 billion commercial fibre roll-out programme including Connahs Quay, Mold, Prestatyn and Wrexham. 

This programme is in addition to the announcement by the Welsh Government and BT of the ambitious Superfast Cymru project which will help the Welsh Government achieve its aim of taking fibre broadband to 96 per cent of Welsh homes and businesses in 2016. 

Mark Dixon, strategic regeneration manager at Denbighshire County Council, said: “This is excellent news for people in the Rhyl area. They’re amongst the latest Wales to have access the next generation of internet services. Reliable, fast connections can make all the difference to education and business, and give people much greater scope for interaction with the world around them. In a tough economic climate, this local investment from BT will help make the town an even better place in which to live, work and do business.” 

Ann Beynon, BT director for Wales, added: “Passing the 500,000 mark is a significant milestone in Wales’s development and commitment to become one of the world’s leading countries for high-speed communications. BT’s extensive fibre network is expanding rapidly in Wales bringing a boost for local economies wherever it goes. 

“As many households and businesses right across Wales have already discovered, fibre broadband is a technology that opens up a whole new world to them. Whatever you’re doing online, you can do it better and faster with fibre.” 

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. 

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 
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.