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UPDATE Scotland’s Next 200 Communities for BT Fibre Broadband Upgrades

Monday, April 20th, 2015 (7:57 am) - Score 14,288

The Digital Scotland project, which is working with BT to roll-out “fibre broadband” (FTTC/P) services to 85% of premises in Scotland by the end of 2015/16 and 95% by the end of 2017/18, has today announced the next batch of 200 communities (145,000 premises) that will benefit from that deployment.

So far the project, which is supported by a mix of both public and private funding (see below), has laid over 3400km of new fibre optic cable and installed more than 900 street cabinets. As a result of this some 275,000 additional homes and businesses have now gained access to the new network, which typically covers areas that would have otherwise been left neglected.

Digital Scotland’s Current Funding

HIE – The Highlands and Islands (£145.8m):
• £126.4m from public bodies (Scottish Government, Department for Culture, Media and Sport [BDUK], Highland and Islands Enterprise and all seven local authorities that form part of the project area)
• £19.4m from BT.

RES – The Rest of Scotland (£264m):
• £157 million from public sources (Scottish Government, ERDF, Department for Culture, Media and Sport [BDUK], and all 27 local authorities that form part of the Rest of Scotland Project area)
• £106.7 from BT.

In addition, service uptake in areas that have been upgraded by the Digital Scotland project stood at 8.7% for the “Rest of Scotland” area and 10.3% for the “Highlands and Islands” region at the end of 2014. In total, including the above effort and existing (separate) commercial coverage, BT’s FTTC (up to 80Mbps capable) dominated broadband network can now reach more than 1.5 million homes and businesses.

Sara Budge, Digital Scotland’s Programme Director, said:

It is great to be celebrating the first year of deployment of the £410 million Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband programme, while announcing that more exchanges will be included, with areas such as Portpatrick in the south of Scotland and as far north as Voe in the Shetland Islands being able to connect to fibre broadband for the first time.

The project is developing a high-speed fibre network which is changing the face of broadband. By reaching out to those who would not have been covered through the commercial market – in towns and into some of our most rural areas – we are ensuring that the connections which are made will bring many benefits to the Scottish people at home and in business.”

The latest batch of upgrades, which among other things will see BTOpenreach expand the coverage of “fibre broadband” around 200 communities in Aberdeenshire, Angus, Ayrshire, Argyll, Bute, the Highlands and Shetland, appears to cover work that will predominantly take place during the last half of 2015 (summer onwards).

A lot of this includes bringing the service to new communities, although some will also involve infill work (i.e. expanding coverage in areas that have already been partly upgraded). The Broadband Delivery UK programme has also made an extra £20.99m available to help Scotland meet the 2017/18 target, which will need to be matched by local authorities and BT etc. The Scottish Government is currently still debating what approach to take with this funding.

We also recommend checking out the latest Audit Scotland report, which revealed a lot about the actual expectations for related broadband speeds in Scotland (here).

List of the Latest Upgrades – Unordered (H2 – 2015)

Exchange Local Authority Infill
Braemar Aberdeenshire
Collieston Aberdeenshire
Cornhill Aberdeenshire
Fettercairn Aberdeenshire
Hillside* Aberdeenshire
Inverbervie Aberdeenshire
Kincardine O’Neil Aberdeenshire
Laurencekirk Aberdeenshire
Longside Aberdeenshire
Lumphanan Aberdeenshire
Maud Aberdeenshire
Memsie Aberdeenshire
Monymusk Aberdeenshire
New Aberdour Aberdeenshire
New Deer Aberdeenshire
New Pitsligo Aberdeenshire
Pitcaple Aberdeenshire
Rosehearty Aberdeenshire
St.Cyrus Aberdeenshire
Strichen Aberdeenshire
Montrose* Aberdeenshire Yes
Carmyllie Angus
Carnoustie Angus Yes
Dundee Fairmuir Angus Yes
Friockheim Angus
Gowanbank Angus
Hillside* Angus
Inverkeilor Angus
Kellas Angus
Montrose* Angus Yes
Muirhead* Angus
Newtyle Angus
Campbeltown Argyll and Bute Yes
Clynder Argyll and Bute
Dunoon Argyll and Bute Yes
Garelochead Argyll and Bute
Helensburgh Argyll and Bute Yes
Kilcreggan Argyll and Bute
Rhu Argyll and Bute
Rothesay Argyll and Bute Yes
Invergarry Highland
Kincraig Highland
Kingussie Highland
Kinlochleven Highland
Lairg Highland
Lybster Highland
Nethybridge Highland
Rogart Highland
Strontian Highland
Thrumster Highland
Tomatin Highland
Watten Highland
Gourock Inverclyde Yes
Greenock Inverclyde Yes
Port Glasgow Harelaw Inverclyde
Port Glasgow Newark Inverclyde
Wemyss Bay Inverclyde
Brodie Moray Yes
Beith North Ayrshire Yes
Dalry North Ayrshire Yes
Irvine North Ayrshire Yes
Kilbirnie North Ayrshire Yes
Largs North Ayrshire
Stanecastle North Ayrshire Yes
Airdrie North Lanarkshire Yes
Bellshill North Lanarkshire Yes
Caldercruix North Lanarkshire
Cambusnethan North Lanarkshire Yes
Cleland North Lanarkshire
Coatbridge* North Lanarkshire Yes
Fauldhouse* North Lanarkshire
Glenboig North Lanarkshire Yes
Harthill* North Lanarkshire
Holytown North Lanarkshire Yes
Motherwell North Lanarkshire Yes
Salsburgh North Lanarkshire
Shotts North Lanarkshire
Wishaw* North Lanarkshire Yes
Birsay Orkney Islands
Orphir Orkney Islands
Sandwick; Orkney Orkney Islands
Stromness Orkney Islands yes
Barrhead* East Renfrewshire Yes
Eaglesham East Renfrewshire
Polmont Falkirk
Boarhills Fife
Colinsburgh Fife
Crail Fife
Elie Fife
Letham (Fife)* Fife
Leven Fife Yes
St. Monans Fife
Strathkinness Fife
Upper Largo Fife
Cranhill Glasgow City Yes
Glasgow Barrhead* Glasgow City Yes
Pollok Glasgow City Yes
Renfrew* Glasgow City Yes
Shettleston Glasgow City Yes
South Glasgow City Yes
Ardgay Highland
Ardgour Highland
Boat Of Garten Highland
Brora Highland
Carrbridge Highland
Castletown Highland
Dulnain Bridge Highland
Edderton Highland
Grantown on Spey Highland
Halkirk Highland
Helmsdale Highland
Bothwell South Lanarkshire Yes
Chapelton South Lanarkshire
Coalburn South Lanarkshire
Crawford South Lanarkshire
Douglas South Lanarkshire
Hamilton South Lanarkshire Yes
Larkhall South Lanarkshire Yes
Strathaven South Lanarkshire Yes
Fauldhouse* South Lanarkshire
Wishaw* South Lanarkshire Yes
Balfron Stirling
Blanefield* Stirling
Buchlyvie Stirling
Drymen Stirling
Fintry Stirling
Killearn Stirling
Lochearnhead Stirling
Strathyre Stirling
Thornhill Stirling
Alexandria West Dunbartonshire Yes
Dumbarton West Dunbartonshire Yes
Duntocher West Dunbartonshire Yes
Armadale West Lothian Yes
Bathgate West Lothian Yes
Fauldhouse* West Lothian
Harthill* West Lothian
Kirkliston* West Lothian
Stoneyburn West Lothian
Whitburn West Lothian Yes
Colinton City of Edinburgh
Corstorphine City of Edinburgh Yes
Craiglockhart City of Edinburgh Yes
Davidson’s Mains City of Edinburgh Yes
Dean City of Edinburgh Yes
Donaldson City of Edinburgh Yes
Fairmilehead City of Edinburgh Yes
Fountainbridge City of Edinburgh Yes
Kirkliston* City of Edinburgh
Maybury City of Edinburgh Yes
Morningside City of Edinburgh Yes
Pentland City of Edinburgh
Rose Street City of Edinburgh
Waverley City of Edinburgh Yes
Wester Hailes City of Edinburgh Yes
Cairnryan Dumfries and Galloway
Creetown Dumfries and Galloway
Glencaple Dumfries and Galloway
Liddesdale Dumfries and Galloway
Portpatrick Dumfries and Galloway
Sorbie Dumfries and Galloway
Broughty Ferry Dundee City Yes
Claverhouse Dundee City Yes
Dundee Baxter Dundee City Yes
Dundee Fairmuir* Dundee City Yes
Dundee Lochee Dundee City
Muirhead* Dundee City
Darvel East Ayrshire Yes
Galston East Ayrshire
Kilmarnock East Ayrshire Yes
Ochiltree East Ayrshire
Stewarton East Ayrshire Yes
Blanefield* East Dunbartonshire
Aberlady East Lothian
Athelstaneford East Lothian
Morebattle East Lothian
North Berwick East Lothian
Westray Orkney Islands
Aberfeldy Perth and Kinross
Abernethy Perth and Kinross
Dunning Perth and Kinross
Muthill Perth and Kinross
Pitlochry Perth and Kinross
Rait Perth and Kinross
Strathardle Perth and Kinross
Strathtay Perth and Kinross
Bishopton Renfrewshire
Lochwinnoch Renfrewshire
Renfrew* Renfrewshire Yes
Thornly Park Renfrewshire Yes
Ancrum Scottish Borders
Cockburnspath Scottish Borders
Coldingham Scottish Borders
Denholm Scottish Borders
Eddleston Scottish Borders
Hawick Scottish Borders Yes
Swinton Scottish Borders
Brae Shetland Islands
Cunningsburgh Shetland Islands Yes
Gott Shetland Islands
Hamnavoe Shetland Islands
Lerwick Shetland Islands Yes
Sandwick; Shetland Shetland Islands
Scalloway Shetland Islands
Skellister Shetland Islands
Sullom Voe Shetland Islands
Sumburgh Shetland Islands Yes
Vidlin Shetland Islands
Voe Shetland Islands
Walls Shetland Islands
Weisdale Shetland Islands
Drybridge South Ayrshire
Dunure South Ayrshire
Kirkmichael South Ayrshire
Symington South Ayrshire
Troon South Ayrshire Yes

* These exchanges feature twice because they serve premises in more than one local authority area.

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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 Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
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