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Buckinghamshire and Hertfordshire UK Sign 2nd BT Fibre Broadband Deal

Tuesday, May 5th, 2015 (8:57 am) - Score 411
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The Connected Counties project, which is working with BT and the Broadband Delivery UK programme to bring faster “fibre broadband” (FTTC/P) connectivity to 90% of premises in Hertfordshire and Buckinghamshire (England) by April 2016, looks set to reach more areas after a new extension contract was signed.

It’s currently anticipated that 52,500 homes and businesses will be put within reach of the new connectivity as part of the original contract (734,500 in total, when combined with BT’s separate commercial deployment). The last official BDUK update for December 2014 revealed that 23,940 of this figure had already been completed (note: uptake among related premises stands at 11.2%).

By comparison little is known about the new Superfast Extension Programme (SEP) contract, which ISPreview.co.uk has learnt was officially signed just before the bank holiday weekend. Plus the pre-election (purdah) period means that we won’t be getting an official press release about it until later.

The Government requires that any local authority seeking to sign a SEP (extended) contract must try to ensure that superfast broadband (24Mbps+) speeds are made available to 95% by the end of 2017. The most recent Public Consultation for the Connected Counties project suggested that under 25,000 premises will miss out on superfast speeds and most of these are likely to be the focus of the new contract.

In terms of funding, last year saw BDUK allocate £6,630,000 to Buckinghamshire and Hertfordshire’s extension contract, yet the new deal confirms that the local authority will only be using £4,070,000. Councils are required to match-fund the BDUK allocations and a few have struggled to achieve this. But whatever the reason, the total public funding for this phase 2 contract will come to just a shade over £8 million. BT may also contribute.

UPDATE 14th May

We have some details for the Hertfordshire side of this contract (here).

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Mark Jackson
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.
Leave a Comment
2 Responses
  1. @Mark Like Derby and Hampshire when did the size of the intervention area drop?
    USC area was stated at less than 20k originally, so is the new figure reflecting a reduction in BT’s commercial footprint which now be funded by state aid?

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