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Gigaclear Spend £6.2m to Extend 1Gbps FTTP Broadband in Kent

Thursday, May 24th, 2018 (9:24 am) - Score 1,733
gigaclear soil dig ftth fttp

Rural fibre optic UK ISP Gigaclear has announced that they’ve invested a further £6.2 million (£8m total so far) to expand their existing Gigabit capable Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP/H) broadband network to reach more than 4,500 additional homes and businesses in West Kent (England) by the end of 2020.

The new ultrafast “full fibre” broadband network expansion is expected to focus on connecting underserved residents and businesses east of Sevenoaks, with communities including Hildenborough, Crouch and West Peckham being among the first to benefit.

Apparently construction will be commencing in the “coming weeks” and the first customers should be connected sometime this summer 2018. Readers with a long memory may recall that the provider first commercially extended their network into Western Kent via the village of Underriver in 2014 (here), with the Godden Green, Dunks Green and Plaxtol communities following in 2015 / 16.

Joe Frost, Gigaclear’s Business Development Director, said:

“We have many very happy rural customers in Kent who are already benefitting from the UK’s fastest broadband. This new investment will enable us to expand our reach in the county, increasing the number of areas that can profit from the economic benefits ultrafast broadband provides. This will allow more rural businesses to thrive and residents to do more online, potentially reducing the need to commute for example.”

Mark Dance, Kent County Council Member for Economic Development, said:

“Our society is more advanced than ever, and fast, reliable connectivity is now as valuable to both residents and businesses as energy and water. Gigaclear’s continued investment in our county ensures that our local communities are able to keep pace with the larger towns and cities when it comes to digital connectivity.”

Gigaclear’s FTTP/H network currently covers over 65,000 homes and businesses in 22 counties across the South West, Midlands and South East of England. It has further contracts and commitments to expand, connecting hundreds of thousands of premises to a completely new full fibre network, which has the potential to reach over 300,000 premises by the end of 2020.

Customers typically pay from £41.30 a month (inc. VAT) for their unlimited symmetric 50Mbps package and this rises up to £76.60 for their top 1Gbps plan. Meanwhile there’s a hefty one-off activation charge of £100 and installation costs start from £129.99. It’s not cheap to setup but this does help to make their model more viable for commercial deployment into rural areas.

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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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14 Responses
  1. Avatar Gadget

    So £1,377/premises to add to add to the various opinions of how much rural FTTP could cost, and that’s excluding some connection based costs.

    • Avatar NGA for all

      Indeed, as opposed to overlaying fibre on an existing passive infrastructure. Good to compare.

    • Avatar Richard

      The revenue they would get for the first year would be £1149.19 if you add installation activation and assume they go for the 1gb connection.

    • Avatar Gadget

      So you think they have no other bills during the year…….pay, NI, office rent and business tax, backhaul, advertising etc?

    • Avatar Alan

      If you include all that it also means you original quoted So £1,377/premises is wrong.

    • Avatar Gadget

      Alan, the usual way of expressing this is – cost to provide service as quoted in the article at £1377/premises, that gets you going then add plus all your running expenses for the future and if that is less than your revenue then you are profitable

    • Avatar 125us

      I don’t think Sevenoaks is particularly rural.

    • Avatar Alan

      SO what is the actual cost per premise?

    • Avatar un4h731x0rp3r0m

      “I don’t think Sevenoaks is particularly rural.”

      “East” of Sevenoaks which the story states has several rural areas, parks, forests, Stately homes of several hundred years of age and even a small school all well away from Sevenoaks the town centre.

  2. Avatar AnotherTim

    How come they can announce this and have people connected in summer 2018, when some of the Fastershire Gigaclear lots that were signed off in 2016 won’t start the build for another year?

  3. Avatar Man in The Game

    Anyone posting negative comments here is looking at short term only. These homes will be connected forever and future proofed well beyond the next few generations. Gigaclear and their eventual owners – they will sell – stand to make fortunes from being the early owners of true FTTP services.

    • Avatar CarlT

      Very true in the longer term. Just requires that companies accept that the payback period may, and in this case will, be pretty long, and that they’ve chosen where they’re deploying carefully as they are certainly going to be pushing the point where payback is unlikely regardless of the timescale due to network maintenance costs.

    • Avatar 125us

      Is anything future proof? Forever is a long time.

      People in Milton Keynes connected to an early fibre network had to have copper lines installed for broadband when it became popular as high speed Internet wasn’t considered as a design requirement. There will be future uses and services that similarly aren’t considered in current fibre roll outs.

      The risk network builders face is that ever declining broadband pricing means that they might never be able to pay back the original investment once interest payments are covered.

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