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North Yorkshire UK Targets 97% Superfast Broadband Coverage

Friday, September 7th, 2018 (8:54 am) - Score 573
rural openreach bt engineer

The Superfast North Yorkshire project in England has revealed how an additional £11.15m of funding, which was recently secured from the Government’s £75m Rural Broadband Infrastructure Scheme (RBIS), could boost “superfast broadband” (24Mbps+) coverage from the current target of 95% to 97%.

At present the existing SFNY contract with Openreach (BT), which was recently extended (here) via a Phase 3 contract to cover an additional 12,500 local homes and businesses with ultrafast Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) technology (or 14,239 if you include some FTTC), expects to reach 95% of premises in the county by June 2021 (currently at around 90%). The new roll-out map for this was published in May 2018 (here) and has just been updated again.

Back in July 2018 the SFNY scheme also announced that it had secured an additional £11.15 million from the recently extended RBIS fund (here), which among other things also adopted the higher download speed definition of 30Mbps+ for “superfast” classification. We should point out that RBIS is part of the Rural Development Programme for England.

At the time of writing we still don’t know precisely which areas will benefit from this extra funding or how it will be spent (details coming soon), although the SFNY programme has now confirmed that they expect the extra funding to deliver 97% coverage of “superfast broadband.” After that they’re also aspiring to target 100% in a future Phase 4 proposal.

Cllr Don Mackenzie, Executive Member for Access, said:

“NYCC is the leading local authority for the supply of superfast broadband and now people can see where it is coming to and start preparing.

The RDPE award is very welcome indeed since it will give our SFNY programme a major boost in bringing superfast broadband to those communities which we have not reached yet. It is likely to raise coverage to 97% of all properties in the county. We will announce details of the additional premises as soon as we can.

High-quality digital infrastructure is essential for business success, for so many needs of households, for education and for health and social care. We do not intend to wait for the end of Phase 3 before beginning a fourth phase of broadband expansion in order to press on towards 100% coverage, although value for money considerations will influence our decision-making in the late stages.”

The UK Government is now pushing a very heavy “full fibre” agenda and this suggests that Phase 4 may well attempt to deliver even more FTTP coverage, not unlike Phase 3. This perspective is supported by the fact that the extra RBIS funding must also be “used to support full fibre wherever possible.”

NOTE: SYFN is managed on behalf of North Yorkshire County Council by NYnet.

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Mark Jackson
By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he is also the founder of ISPreview since 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
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2 Responses
  1. DB

    Please tell me if I’m wrong Mark but the plan is in the public domain and has been for some time: https://www.northyorks.gov.uk/news/article/superfast-broadband-progress-mapped-out and for more granular detail of the phase 3 FTTP see http://superfastnorthyorkshire.com/#where-when

    More info: BT won the bid over Quickline’s wireless proposal and I believe Boundless Networks were in the running too.

  2. Nick H

    The elephant in the room here as local politicians crow, is, as it has been since 2005, geographically, 90% of North Yorkshire still does not have a proper service and it not going to change with this announcement. This condemns 1000’s in the agricultural community to a bleak future. With phase three the smaller villages are being reached where its on a main route. It leaves the majority of farms and small settlements in between with what the wireless operators can offer if they have coverage. The chance has been missed to achieve a county wide solution and with a complete wireless ‘catch all’ let alone satisfying the Universal service obligation to which nobody has a clue how it might be delivered. Now its barely economic for wireless providers to build new repeaters as it was small villages that allowed them to build out in the first place and they cant compete with FTTP. The have’s and have not’s just become even more polarised and our precious countryside suffers. It feeds us and keeps our air clean and provides us with so much of our pleasures outside of work. The bidding process needs to have coverage as ‘king’ rather sacrificing our countryside. Surely we can be more imaginative when spending £5000 per property passed in Phase 3 let alone a criminal waste in tax payers money giving it all to BT to maintain their monopoly.

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