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The UK Top 30 Fastest and Slowest Streets for Broadband ISP Speed

Friday, December 8th, 2017 (12:01 am) - Score 3,480

A new study has used data from 1,064,681 consumer speedtests to produce a list of the top 30 fastest and slowest streets for download speed. Thorpe Lane in Trimley St Martin (Suffolk) was the slowest on 0.68Mbps, while Benford Avenue in Motherwell (Lanarkshire) was the fastest at 177.01Mbps.

The uSwitch.com report is based on speed tests conducted between 1st September 2016 and 1st August 2017 with 76,402 unique IP addresses (reflecting 9,099 postcodes). In order for a street to qualify for inclusion in the top or bottom 30, tests from at least 3 unique IP addresses and at least 10 residential properties were required at a postcode.

The research also claims that 20.6% of broadband users were found to receive speeds of under 10Mbps (below the forthcoming USO), while 8.6% crawl along at less than 5Mbps. On the flip side 36.7% now get average speeds of 30Mbps+ (up from 22% two years ago). NOTE: These particular findings were based on a much larger pool of 30,051,858 consumer speed tests.

First.. The Caveats

As usual it’s vitally important to explain that this data doesn’t necessarily mean what those in certain corners of the mass media might think. In particular, you should not to be equating speedtest based studies like this to reflect the availability of faster connections as the two are far from being in perfect sync.

Generally it’s estimated that fixed line “superfast broadband” (24Mbps+) networks should now be available to around 95% of UK premises (hopefully rising to 98% by 2020), although in reality many people have yet to upgrade (not everybody can afford, is aware of or even feels the need to upgrade). As a result a little under half the country still subscribe to significantly slower copper ADSL lines.

Connection performance can also be impacted by other factors, such as poor home wiring, user choice of package speed (e.g. even if 1Gbps is available most people may still pick a slower and cheaper package), network congestion and of course anybody conducting a test while being connected via WiFi is unlikely to get the best result. On top of that there are also some areas where the availability of superfast connectivity is still a big problem, such as in many rural villages and those locations where FTTC cabinets are full to capacity.

Something else to consider is that speed tests often muddle up residential and business connectivity, which can be a big problem where higher capacity links are concerned. A single multi-Gigabit leased line could disproportionately influence the results vs several slower home connections.

The Results

Now let’s get back to the results. Unsurprisingly uSwitch found that broadband users living in and around the UK’s largest cities are the most likely to find themselves with superfast speeds. This is a finding that will surely shock nobody, except perhaps those unfortunate enough to still be living inside an urban slow spot (e.g. there are a fair few to be found around London).

However the research itself is still useful for helping to track and show how adoption of faster broadband services is changing over time, although sadly uSwitch did not include an additional column to show how the same streets performed in 2016 vs 2017. Perhaps next time.

Side Note: Thorpe Lane, the supposed slowest street, appears to have FTTC available for faster speeds (up to around 20-24Mbps at best, so not quite superfast but closer than 0.67Mbps) and that’s by no means the only one.

The Top 30 Slowest UK Streets for Broadband

Rank Street name and location Average download speed (Mbps)
1 Thorpe Lane, Trimley St Martin, Felixstowe, Suffolk 0.679
2 Cawcliff Lane, Wilton, Pickering, North Yorkshire 0.711
3 Old Road, Maisemore, Gloucester, Gloucestershire 0.843
4 Creeting Lane, Creeting St Peter, Ipswich, Suffolk 0.857
5 Opies Terrace, Four Lanes, Redruth, Cornwall 0.867
6 Hatton Green, Warwick, Warwickshire 0.879
7 Saltney Gate, Holbeach, Spalding, Lincolnshire 0.886
8 Rimini Road, Andover, Hampshire 0.895
9 Ashdown Drive, Chorley, Lancashire 0.944
10 Oldfort Road, Omagh, County Tyrone 0.974
11 Goudhurst Court, Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire 0.986
12 Thirlmere Drive, Essington, Wolverhampton, Staffordshire 0.990
13 Nuthurst Street, Nuthurst, Horsham, West Sussex 1.003
14 Noak Hill Road, Billericay, Essex 1.007
15 The Gardens, Compton, Paignton, Devon 1.015
16 Sixteen Foot Bank, Stonea, March, Cambridgeshire 1.026
17 Kirkthorpe Lane, Heath, Wakefield, West Yorkshire 1.028
18 Craigflower Road, Glasgow 1.028
19 Pentland Way, Grangemouth, Stirlingshire 1.038
20 Thomas Penson Road, Gobowen, Oswestry, Shropshire 1.049
21 Willow Corner, Bayford, Hertford, Hertfordshire 1.054
22 Primrose Way, Minster on Sea, Sheerness, Kent 1.116
23 Bankhead, Milnathort, Kinross, Perth and Kinross 1.122
24 Slade Lane, Homer, Much Wenlock, Shropshire 1.141
25 Three Sisters Lane, Prestbury, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire 1.146
26 Church Lane, Kirkby-la-Thorpe, Sleaford, Lincolnshire 1.147
27 Shakespeare Avenue, Rayleigh, Essex 1.154
28 Glan-y-Nant, Fochriw, Bargoed, Gwent 1.182
29 Willow Close, Brinsworth, Rotherham, South Yorkshire 1.207
30 Wye Road, Boughton Lees, Ashford, Kent 1.209

The Top 30 Fastest UK Streets for Broadband

Rank Street name and location Average download speed (Mbps)
1 Benford Avenue, Motherwell, North Lanarkshire 177.009
2 Sheskin Gardens, Londonderry, County Londonderry 158.497
3 Crosswood Road, Swindon, Wiltshire 158.355
4 Astill Lodge Road, Leicester, Leicestershire 155.856
5 Olive Hill Road, Halesowen, West Midlands 152.093
6 Bonny Grove, Middlesbrough, North Yorkshire 151.057
7 Red Willow, Harlow, Essex 143.700
8 Arden Oak Road, Birmingham, West Midlands 142.576
9 Airbles Crescent, Motherwell, North Lanarkshire 141.344
10 Dearden Street, Little Lever, Bolton, Greater Manchester 139.524
11 Holmrook Road, Carlisle, Cumbria 138.353
12 Ullswater Drive, Wetherby, West Yorkshire 137.424
13 Chestnut Drive, Pinner, Greater London 134.030
14 Kingsdyke Avenue, Glasgow 132.797
15 Oaklands Grove, Waterlooville, Hampshire 132.449
16 Chatham Road, Kingston upon Thames, Greater London 131.076
17 Wordsworth Drive, Rotherham, South Yorkshire 130.281
18 Claybridge Road, London, Greater London 129.757
19 Simshill Road, Glasgow 129.386
20 Fairmead Mews, Lower Burraton, Saltash, Cornwall 129.322
21 Baxter Avenue, Southend-on-Sea, Essex 129.115
22 Acer Close, Lincoln, Lincolnshire 128.933
23 Larch Avenue, Newton-le-Willows, Merseyside 128.472
24 Inmans Road, Hull, East Yorkshire 128.290
25 Hempstead Road, Gillingham, Kent 128.248
26 Beechfield Road, Smethwick, West Midlands 127.686
27 Bodmin Avenue, Slough, Berkshire 127.270
28 Taeping Street, London, Greater London 126.510
29 The Rake, Wirral, Merseyside 126.461
30 Mauchline Court, Hamilton, South Lanarkshire 125.773

Now a few words just in from the ISPA.

Andrew Glover, ISPA Chair, said:

“ISPA understands the frustrations of those unable to receive a good quality broadband connection and this is why our members are continually working to boost broadband speeds, from alternative networks delivering solutions on a regional or local basis using a variety of technologies to a nationwide rollout programme that covers 94% of the UK. In addition, everyone in the UK should soon have a right to request a minimum broadband connection of 10Mbps under the broadband Universal Service Obligation.

Thanks to the continued investment and innovation of our members, broadband speeds are increasing each year, with the average speed of 37Mbps in 2016, up from 28Mbps in 2015 and 23Mbps in 2014, according to the regulator. ISPs are also committed to providing their customers with transparency about broadband speeds, including an estimate of the actual speed their line is capable of receiving before entering into a contract and providing customers with the ability to exit the contract if the speeds fall below a certain level.

We advise customers to speak to their ISP about steps they may be able to take to improve the speeds they actually receive as a number of factors can affect the actual speed many of which are outside of an ISP’s control. These include home wiring, the number of devices sharing a connection, the quality of equipment and the limitations of web-based speed tests which often only provide a limited snapshot of performance.”

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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.
Leave a Comment
11 Responses
  1. TheFacts says:

    Completely pointless, like the last time.

    1. New_Londoner says:

      Agree. Like most of the so-called market research from uSwitch, it is in reality nothing more than clickbait, misrepresents the reality to generate traffic to the uSwitch site. Could be worth complaints to the ASA and MRS.

      In short it’s fake news from a serial offender, Donald Trump would be proud!

    2. Mark Jackson says:

      Just to play devil’s advocate. I think you can argue about the spin that some may put on the data and the lack of context or checking done to highlight changes over time or availability, but there’s nothing strictly wrong with the observations of speed and it feeds into the debate around take-up.

      One of the challenges here is that a lot of those who report on it will not consider the correct context for the data when they write about it. So I wouldn’t call the data itself fake news, it’s still useful when taken within the right context.

    3. Steve Jones says:

      Absolutely. Just designed to garner media attention. The real fastest and slowest streets are going to be much more extreme than that. In any event, it’s meaningless unless you happen to live their.

    4. GNewton says:

      New_Londoner: “Could be worth complaints to the ASA and MRS.”

      ASA is one of the leading fake news promoters with its misleading definition of “fibre” broadband”, as applied by VM, BT and others. The only protection for consumers is education, you can’t rely on uSwitch, ASA, or the big telecoms to do the job for this. It’s up to the individual to do some research before getting a broadband product.

  2. Davek says:

    . In addition, everyone in the UK should soon have a right to request a minimum broadband connection of 10Mbps under the broadband Universal Service Obligation
    WHEN ???

    1. Mark Jackson says:

      The aim is for it to be effective from 2020 but we’re still awaiting the Government’s final decision / details.

  3. dragoneast says:

    There’s a lot of bull out there. I avoid most junk mail by not dealing with the disreputable; but had one bit recently that got through “explaining” that if I was concerned about my broadband speed I could get my ISP to come round and move my router to the optimum position and fit me up with ethernet wiring in my dwelling. Didn’t say which ISP though. Not any that I’ve ever dealt with!

    I suppose as we all tend to believe whatever we like, we ask for it though!

  4. TheFacts says:

    If it is ‘at least 10 residential properties were required at a postcode.’ then postcodes with fewer then 10, like here, will be ignored.

    Any links to the full report?

  5. Bloke says:

    Right, now average the UPLOAD and the download speed and show THAT.

    Sick of hearing about download speeds without any mention of upload speeds, not all of us are mindless consumers and even if it’s just for backup, upload speeds matter too.

    1. GNewton says:

      This is a good point, in view of the importance of cloud services.

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