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Top 20 UK Fastest and Slowest Streets for Broadband Speed 2018 UPDATE

Wednesday, December 12th, 2018 (12:01 am) - Score 2,530
broadband isp download speed uk progress

A new study has used data from 279,186 consumer speedtests to produce a list of the top 20 fastest and slowest UK streets for broadband ISP download speed. Overall Greenmeadows Park (Cheltenham) has been named the slowest on 0.14Mbps, while Abdon Avenue (Birmingham) was the fastest 265.89Mbps.

The uSwitch.com research is based on speed tests conducted between 1st October 2017 and 30th September 2018. This took the slowest and fastest postcodes from the 279,186 speeds tests, across 148,013 unique IP addresses within 29,816 postcodes. In order for a street to qualify for inclusion, tests from at least 3 unique IP addresses and at least 10 residential properties were required at a postcode.

Overall the study found that 26.3% of the data sample struggled with speeds of less than 10Mbps (starting speed for the Government’s forthcoming Broadband USO), while 13.3% crawl along at less than 5Mbps, but happily the number of broadband users enjoying faster speeds is growing. Nearly a third of users (31%) now get speeds of 30Mbps+ (up from 22% three years ago).

Apparently broadband users living in the South West of England (Devon, Dorset, Cornwall and Wiltshire etc.) are also the most likely to find themselves with superfast speeds (i.e. home to some of the UK’s fastest streets).

Caveats Galore

As usual there are a few big points of clarification that need to be made. Speed test based reports like this generally don’t mean what those in certain corners of the mass media might think. In particular, nobody should be equating such studies to reflect the availability of faster connections as the two are far from being in sync.

At present it’s estimated that fixed “superfast broadband” (24Mbps+) networks are available to almost 96% of UK premises (rising to around 98% by the end of 2020), although in reality many people have yet to upgrade (i.e. they cannot afford, are aware of or even feel the need to upgrade). As a result a little over 40% of premises still subscribe to far slower copper ADSL lines, despite most now being within reach of faster networks.

Speed tests like this can also be impacted by other factors, such as poor home wiring, user choice of package (e.g. 1Gbps could be available but most people may still pick a slower and cheaper tier), local network congestion and slow home WiFi performance etc. In short, take these results with a good pinch of salt.

Finally, it’s possible that in some cases business class high-capacity leased lines could be impacting the results and it’s unclear whether mobile connections were included or not. We should also point out that the slowest streets will be those precious few isolated locations that still struggle to get a working internet connection or have too few results, which won’t show up below.

NOTE: uSwitch found that superfast broadband was available on 35% of the UK’s slowest streets.

The Top 20 Slowest UK Streets for Broadband

Rank Street Name and Location Average Download (Mbps) Has Access to Superfast Broadband?
1 Greenmeadows Park, Bamfurlong, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire 0.143 No
2 Poplar Avenue, Oldham, Greater Manchester 0.221 Yes
3 Chesham Road, Wilmslow, Cheshire 0.249 Yes
4 Cynghordy, Llandovery, Ceredigion 0.267 No
5 St David’s Close, Worksop, Nottinghamshire 0.290 No
6 Broomhall, Worcester, Worcestershire 0.291 Yes
7 Milton Road, Cowplain, Waterlooville, Hampshire 0.338 Yes
8 Shaw Lane, Doncaster, South Yorkshire 0.352 No
9 Cross Lane, Bebington, Wirral, Merseyside 0.354 No
10 Pennant, Llanbrynmair, Powys 0.388 No
11 St Margaret’s Grove, Redcar, Teesside 0.409 Yes
12 Meggitt Lane, Winteringham, Scunthorpe, North Lincolnshire 0.423 No
13 Field Lane, Strubby, Alford, Lincolnshire 0.432 No
14 Ha of Gills, Canisbay, Wick, Caithness 0.439 No
15 The Willows, Acaster Malbis, York, North Yorkshire 0.463 No
16 Quarterland Road, Killinchy, Newtownards, County Down 0.465 No
17 Halkburn Road, Galashiels, Selkirkshire 0.466 No
18 May Tree Lane, Waterthorpe, Sheffield, South Yorkshire 0.467 Yes
19 Turnpike Road, Connor Downs, Sheffield, South Yorkshire 0.483 No
20 Southacre Drive, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire 0.484 Yes

The Top 20 Fastest UK Streets for Broadband

Rank Street Name and Location Average Download (Mbps)
1 Abdon Avenue, Birmingham, West Midlands 265.891
2 Redwell Grove, Kings Hill, West Malling, Kent 178.385
3 Darwin Street, Livingston, West Lothian 164.235
4 Derbeth Grange, Kingswells, Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire 156.481
5 Derby Road, Duffield, Belper, Derbyshire 153.138
6 Chatsworth Road, Swindon, Wiltshire 145.027
7 Limeharbour, Isle of Dogs, London 143.409
8 Clifton Drive, Sprotbrough, Doncaster, South Yorkshire 142.545
9 Feldspar Close, Sittingbourne, Kent 141.451
10 Mackenzie Road, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire 136.086
11 Stad Swn Y Gwynt, Rhostrehwfa, Llangefni, Anglesey 129.628
12 Wellside Place, Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire 116.576
13 Highbre Crest, Whitstone, Holsworthy, Devon 115.968
14 Newsome Street, Leyland, Lancashire 110.658
15 Alverton Road, Penzance, Cornwall 101.363
16 The Chestnuts, Lea, Malmesbury, Wiltshire 99.361
17 Nursery Mount, Leeds, West Yorkshire 98.159
18 Tiverton Drive, Rumney, Cardiff 95.453
19 Fairfield Avenue, Knaresborough, North Yorkshire 91.208
20 Sopers Lane, Poole, Dorset 87.898

Despite its limitations, the research is 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 2017 vs 2018.

UPDATE 10:29am

We’ve had a comment come in from London focused FTTH ISP Community Fibre.

Jeremy Chelot, CEO of Community Fibre, said:

“As this research shows, basic Internet access is simply no longer enough. As the majority of the connections in the UK are copper-based, it is evident that the UK is not fully prepared for the digital future.

To keep up with these demands, quality true full-fibre broadband must be regarded as an essential utility. With a greater number of vital services going online and demanding a high-speed connection, strong and decisive action will be required sooner than many anticipate.

It is therefore not enough to measure success by simple internet connections- the number of true full-fibre connections is the only measure policymakers should be interested in.

Recent OFCOM research has found that the average household is doubling its data consumption every two years, be it watching online video or accessing government services, and so adequate broadband is swiftly becoming vital.

To ensure that rural areas get the connectivity they need, one of the things the government needs to do is to take steps to strengthen relationships between landlords and Internet Service providers, as well as nurture competition through supporting small service providers. Greater collaboration and competition would undoubtedly result in a quicker and more effective rollout of full-fibre networks in all areas of the UK.

It is also imperative that policy makers are clear over what constitutes ‘true full-fibre’. Although some services providers in the UK label their networks as ‘full-fibre broadband’, this term is typically used to describe services using “fibre-to-the-cabinet” (FTTC) or “fibre-to-the-basement” (FTTB) technology.”

UPDATE 4:59pm

Openreach has kindly added their comment to this story.

An Openreach Spokesperson said:

“There are more than 17.5 million homes and businesses in the UK that can order a better service over our network today, but who haven’t yet upgraded – meaning they lose out on more reliable, resilient connections that would allow them to work from home, access every entertainment platform, and manage smart home devices at the same time without so much as a second thought.

At Openreach, we are committed to playing our part in upgrading the country to better broadband. One of the ways in which we do so is by offering long-term price reductions for our wholesale fibre products, which we hope will encourage providers to upgrade their customers onto the faster, more dependable services we’ve built. We encourage customers to get in touch with their providers today and discover what might be on offer in their area.”

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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.
Leave a Comment
6 Responses
  1. Avatar Tim

    What happened to the uSwitch streetstats page? Used to be able to view speed test results on a map but can’t find it anymore.

  2. Avatar chris conder

    If they tested one of our streets they would find everyone can get a gig. I don’t think this sort of research is much good. also most speed tests are now done on wireless devices which can’t measure the speed received so there are very few accurate results.

  3. Avatar TheFacts

    Greenmeadows Park, Bamfurlong, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire

    Your property is in plan to be enabled under phase 2 of the Fastershire rollout.

  4. Avatar EndlessWaves

    There’s a typo in the average download speed column for the fastest streets.

    It’s also worth pointing out that 30,000 postcodes is just 1.7% of the 1,800,000 postcodes in the UK. With the requirement of three separate speedtests that could easily drop to just 1% of streets covered.

    So while the overall data may be interesting, the named streets should be treated as examples rather than anything close to definitive.

  5. Avatar Anon

    Erm wheres Hull / KCOM???

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