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Virgin Media Expand Cable Broadband to 80,000 Leeds UK Premises

Thursday, Jul 30th, 2015 (8:23 am) - Score 1,480

Cable operator Virgin Media (Liberty Global), fresh from kicking off the deployment of their new £3bn “Project Lightning” network expansion in Manchester last month (here), has announced that 80,000 premises in Leeds (West Yorkshire, England) will be the next to benefit.

So far we’ve been a little disappointed with Virgin Media, which doesn’t appear to be putting in as much effort as other operators when it comes to announcing their future roll-out plans. Never the less we do get the odd trickle of information and today is no exception.

Apparently some £40 million is being invested into improving the reach of their 152Mbps “ultrafast” capable cable broadband (EuroDOCSIS3) network in Leeds and the first to benefit will be approximately 11,000 premises in the mostly residential suburb of Middleton.

Tom Mockridge, CEO of Virgin Media, said:

Local authorities have an important role in getting ultrafast broadband to more people, more quickly. Virgin Media is investing £3bn to improve the UK’s digital infrastructure. We need more local authorities, like Leeds City Council, to work with us to cut the red tape and secure investment for their residents.”

Funnily enough Middleton was a few short years ago also the focus of a strong campaign to get BT’s slower FTTC deployment into the area, which came after the operator initially described the idea as commercially unviable (here). A local campaign eventually encouraged BT to change its mind and the operator ended up struggling to cope with the huge demand from local premises (here).

Needless to say that Virgin Media hasn’t taken as much convincing and that bodes well for the area, particularly those parts where BT has been slow to upgrade.

UPDATE 9:01am

Added some more details from final press release. Virgin also states that their deployment means “first time access to ultrafast broadband for 80% of homes and businesses in Leeds“. Many people consider 100Mbps+ to be the point at which “ultrafast” begins, so Virgin are clearly excluding BT’s FTTC (up to 80Mbps) service from this.

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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