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95 Percent of Nottinghamshire UK Now Covered by Superfast Broadband

Saturday, May 7th, 2016 (7:29 am) - Score 501

The Better Broadband for Nottinghamshire project in England has confirmed that its first Broadband Delivery UK based contract has now completed, which means that 95% of local homes and businesses are now within reach of a superfast broadband (24Mbps+) service.

The £19.8m contract was unique because Nottinghamshire has become one of the few counties able to deliver “superfast broadband” (FTTC/P) coverage of 95%, which came at a time when most of the other Phase 1 deals were attempting to meet the lower goal of 90% within a similar time-frame. Elsewhere the Government’s 95% target for the rest of the UK won’t be met until the end of 2017.

It’s worth adding that the Phase 1 Contract should have delivered the service to an additional 52,000+ homes and businesses in the county, including 400 new roadside street cabinets and 1 million metres of new fibre optic cable. According to the original deal, the footprint of BT’s raw “fibre broadband” network (including sub-24Mbps areas) should now be standing at around 98%.

Councillor Diana Meale, Chair of Economic Development Committee, said:

“Access to good quality broadband is just as important as access to basic utilities for many residents and businesses today, making BBfN a vital investment in Nottinghamshire’s infrastructure and future economic prospects.

Delivering the scheme in a diverse county like Nottinghamshire has been challenging, but I am delighted that we have been able to deliver the first phase of such a huge project ahead of schedule and within budget.

Whilst it will always be our ambition for every home and business in the county to have access to superfast broadband, the fact that coverage in Nottinghamshire is well ahead of the national and regional average should be celebrated and places our area at an advantage when trying to attract the inward investment, jobs and better quality of life for our residents that we crave.

Phase two of BBfN is being more targeted at those districts with more rural areas where, despite making large strides in improving coverage, more investment is needed to bring them up to the level of coverage enjoyed in the rest of the county. In many cases, people and businesses living in those towns and villages have been unable to access the online services, learning, communication and opportunities that many of us now take for granted – but not for much longer.”

As hinted above the latest BDUK based Superfast Extension Programme (Phase 2) contract, which is worth £9.2m, was officially signed in May 2015 (here) and will add another 17,000+ premises to the total and take 24Mbps+ coverage to 98% of the county by Spring 2018 (we’d guess this will deliver virtually universal “fibre broadband” coverage).

Apparently the Phase 2 contract is starting immediately (9 months earlier than initially planned) and will see more than 130 towns and villages in the county either get access to the service for the first time, or see existing provision boosted to superfast speeds. Most of the work is set to be focused upon the rural areas of Bassetlaw, Newark and Sherwood and Rushcliffe (more details).

Finally, it’s noted that 27% of premises in areas covered by the first phase of BBfN have already signed up to receive the new service, which is some of the highest uptake across the UK and means that the county will be in a good position to clawback (gainshare) a piece of its public funding from BT in order to reinvest into further improvements.

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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.
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18 Responses
  1. Avatar Sledgehammer

    If you add up the present capacity of all cabs that can provide FTTC it will not come any where near 95%.

    • Avatar Steve Jones

      I’m sure that Andrew from TBB. He has the stats and the estimating tools. I’ve no idea why you are so certain. Perhaps, you could enlighten us as to your estimate. Nowhere near 95% implies that there’s an enormous gap between the claimed figure and the one you believe is the case.

    • Avatar Steve Jones

      oops. First sentence should have read.

      I’m sure that Andrew from TBB will be producing his own figures.

    • Avatar Steve Jones

      Actually, on rereading it might be that you are referring to the fact that if all these cabinets were enabled it would not allow 95% of the county to be covered. That’s hardly important assuming OR’s capacity planning process is up to the job of installing (or upgrading) existing cabinets to higher capacity based on forward projections. Any such work has to be done at OR’s expense (and I believe they are contractually obliged to do it in BDUK areas). As the power and fibre is already in place, incremental costs of a new cabinet ought to be significantly lower in the great majority of cases.

      The target was never “95% of properties were connected” it was “95% of properties to be able to connect”.

    • Avatar MikeW

      Assuming @sledgehammer really is talking about capacity rather than coverage, you’d have to ask why he thinks it matters.

      First, only 82%ish have internet access anyway. You don’t need to provide capacity for people that will never buy it.

      Second, only 20% of the Notts intervention area have chosen to upgrade. You need to provide capacity for more, of course, but there seems to be plenty who are happy to stay on ADSL, or who can’t afford the upgrade. Why provide capacity for people who won’t bother?

      Thirdly, VM provide coverage and capacity too: over 90% of Nottingham, and 65% of the county. Nationally, VM get about 40% market share within the areas they actually provide cable for. Why provide capacity for people who are subscribed via separate infrastructure?

      Right now, it looks like BT need to provide capacity for 25% of the coverage area, perhaps rising to 40% over a few years. Hard to see the need for more.

  2. Avatar fastman

    sledgehammer its about access to !!!! and around premises passed

    • Avatar gerarda

      What has premises passed got to do with coverage other than trying to fool politicians that availability is higher than it actually is?

    • Avatar MikeW

      “Premises passed”, with the appropriate speed threshold test, is the same as coverage.

      Always has been.

      The pro-FTTP lobby have been allowed to perpetuate the myth that “premises passed” is a useless measure by inconsistent, or absent, use of the threshold in PR – from central government, local government and BT.

      Inconsistent use leads to confusion, and only serves to fill comment spaces like this with threads of drivel.

    • Avatar themanstan

      FTTP works on a passed as well… as suppliers don´t put in the final drop unless the customer signs on the dotted line… it´s so pathetic…

    • Avatar gerarda


      Unfortunately most politicians don’t know about the proviso, and BTs spin department always tries to ensure that coverage figures they quote are without the proviso.

    • Avatar TheFacts

      @gerarda – what figure would you quote?

  3. Avatar fastman

    actually so do Gigaclear !!!! as you either do the drop of pay them to do it

    Actually the drop from the DP to premise is the hardest part — I have seen some that a few hundred pounds and some at many thousands of pounds

  4. Avatar fastman

    any Sep FTTP project may have ECC (excess constuction charges from the DP to the premise !!!! — say you have a 200 metres Direct in Ground (buried cable) from your DP to your rural premise that can be expensive to put a duct in for the FTTP which you would never need to do if that was FTTC

  5. Avatar Sledgehammer

    95% of local homes and businesses are now within reach of a superfast broadband (24Mbps+) service.

    They are NOT, if 95% asked for a fttc connection a large number would not get it. Because the fttc cabs are not connected or not installed. Also the cabs that are installed do not have the capacity the old cabs have. It’s going to be a very long time before anyone who needs fttc connection can get one right away.

    As already stated BT are only going to activate cabs when sufficient orders make it viable, with the likely hood that some areas are going to have to wait for additional fttc cabs to be installed or existing cabs to be connected.

    I am not holding my breath waiting for my local cab to have power connected, it’s been 2.5 years come the end of June that the fttc cab has been there and I fully expect it’s activation date to be put back another 6 months soon.

    • Avatar fastman

      Sledgehammer happt to look if there is a specific problem with your cab which there sounds like or is the case your cab has a specific problem — of course if might be available already and your service provider may not offer it to you — assume you checked via the BT Wholesale DSL checker

    • Avatar MikeW

      Posting the same nonsense twice?

  6. Avatar Sledgehammer

    @ fastman

    I do check on a regular week day, have been doing this for about 18 to 20 months. So boring seeing the same reply from BT. I begin to think that the cost to BT will not be recovered if they do. Just lack of interest locally in fttc.

  7. Avatar fastman

    so is the cab physically in place , or is there something that us stopping it — what cab are we talking about

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