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BT Delays FTTC Superfast Broadband Upgrade in Burton UK by 3 Months

Tuesday, Mar 27th, 2012 (8:37 am) - Score 821

BT has warned that some homes and businesses in the joint Staffordshire and Derbyshire town of Burton (Burton-on-Trent) may now have to wait until 30th June 2012 (originally 31st March) before the area is upgraded to support the operators ‘up to’ 40-80Mbps superfast broadband technology (FTTC). Apparently an unspecified technical problem at the local telephone exchange is holding the work up.

In fairness such major work rarely goes precisely according to plan and delays are to be expected. Ordinarily this wouldn’t even be headline news but then Burton is perhaps a special case. The town is a classic example of why broadband provision and performance problems aren’t merely a rural issue.

Burton is home to an estimated population of over 65,000 but until last June 2011 it hadn’t even been mentioned as part of BT’s superfast broadband rollout (here). For several months last year BT was telling locals that they couldn’t have a broadband ISP connection, let alone a phone line, because the local telephone exchange had run out of capacity. Suffice to say that the town has had to campaign very hard for improved internet access.

A BT Spokesman said (Burton Mail):

The £2.5 billion roll-out of ‘superfast’ broadband by Openreach is the largest engineering project of its kind in the world currently being undertaken, with between 80,000 and 100,000 premises being passed every week in the UK and around seven million in total passed so far.

For this reason, the quarterly ‘go live’ dates that are published are a guide only and can sometimes be subject to change. Openreach gives quarterly updates to service providers so they in turn can update their potential customers.

Due to some additional engineering work that is required to complete the upgrade in Burton, the first customers are likely to be able to order super-fast broadband during early April rather than by the end of March, as was originally hoped.”

Delays like this can be very frustrating but hopefully having to wait an extra few weeks or months, depending upon where in the town you’re located, won’t be too painful. At least the service is still coming.

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By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on X (Twitter), Mastodon, Facebook and .
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