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Cardiff Gets £500,000 Full Fibre Boost from Welsh Government

Friday, August 28th, 2020 (12:34 pm) - Score 1,404
network cables and fiber optic closeup with keyboard background

A successful bid for investment has today resulted in Cardiff Council (Wales) securing a £500,000 funding boost from the Welsh Government (WG), which will be used to improve the cable duct infrastructure that transports a lot of fibre optic broadband and data connectivity around the city.

Businesses in the city’s growing creative industries sector have been working closely with the council for the past 18 months and together they have identified the need for the city to expand its existing fibre optic duct network. “This is in order to increase the capacity of the ‘Cardiff Creative Network’ aimed at providing the gigabit broadband speeds required by the sector,” said the WG.

The exact details of this project are still a little unclear, although it’s due to be completed sometime in 2021. Apparently, part of the aim is to join up with ongoing investment in the duct network along the M4 corridor, thus bringing further benefits across part of the South Wales region.

All of this should complement the Welsh Government’s recent £52.5m Phase 2 Superfast Cymru contract with BT (Openreach), which is in the process of extending gigabit-capable Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) broadband technology to an additional 39,000 premises by June 2022 (here).

Lee Waters, Deputy Minister for Economy and Transport, said:

“The funding we are announcing today will improve the fibre infrastructure enabling the provision of gigabit broadband speeds in the city. This will help Cardiff Council with plans they have to provide faster broadband for the creative industries and to monitor transport across the city so they can pinpoint where improvements can be made to encourage active travel.

By improving and expanding the current fibre ducts system in the city we can make an important contribution to plans to support businesses.

Elsewhere in Wales the rollout with Openreach, which is part of a package of measures to bring faster broadband to communities, is bringing gigabit speed broadband to premises. We have also topped up the UK Government’s Gigabit Voucher scheme, making it the most generous in the UK.”

Council Leader, Cllr Huw Thomas, said:

“Cardiff is already established as one of the UK’s creative powerhouses and the sector supports thousands of jobs and contributes over £1 billion to the economy every year. We want to build on that success and help the sector continue to flourish and one way we can do this is by improving the city’s digital infrastructure.

There is more to be done, but this important funding from Welsh Government will enable us to start delivering the connectivity needed by the industry and will also support our ongoing work to harness ‘smart’ technology to improve day to day life for people who live and work in Cardiff.

The funding has been welcomed by businesses in the sector. Rich Moss, Managing Director of Gorilla TV, said: “As Wales’ largest Television Post Production company, Gorilla TV welcomes this technology boost from Welsh Government and commends Cardiff Council for its prioritisation of these infrastructure needs.

Connectivity has never been so relevant and crucial to our business. Not only is this infrastructure a business necessity but with it comes the opportunity for a more diverse and inclusive talent pool to showcase our creative output to global markets, boosting our industry and the economy of Wales.”


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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.
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11 Responses
  1. dee.jay says:

    Cardiff, Cardiff, Cardiff. That’s all that matters in Wales, apparently.

    1. Combat Squirrel says:

      It’s almost like Cardiff is the capital, and has the highest population density, largest amount of businesses and largest amount of people in within the City.

      Providing full fibre for Cardiff will improve the lives and the economics of Wales far more than upgrading a random small village up in the valleys.

      I say this as someone living in semi-rural Wales, on a 1.5KM aluminium untwisted pair 1960’s post office cable, which manages a paltry sync of 24Mbit. I’m aware there are those with no broadband, or still on ADSL.

      Stil, the digital divide is gradually improving over the years, and within 10 years we should see much more FTTP in Wales.

      For those in exceptionally rural areas, Starlink with it’s 20-30MS is looking like a fantastic option. In a few years they’ll have a huge % of the world covered, and should help many.

    2. Simi says:

      Yes! I mean after all there are no other Gigabit providers in Cardiff.

      Oh wait..

      While the towns around it get 50mbps FTTC and F all else!”

      Wonderful CCC – Proud to pay my taxes towards you ( not)

  2. CarlT says:

    I sometimes wonder why you actually bother writing articles, Mark, would be far easier to just write a headline and then let people rant in comments as many don’t seem to read the article anyway.

    1. Gary says:

      How so Carl ?

      Cardiff centric investment to improve Internet capacity for Cardiff, that’s what Marks piece covers and that’s what people out with that area are moaning about.

      As for Csquirrel, The people in those small villages up a valley wont seen any tangible benefit that ‘improves their lives’ what so ever, from this compared to actually getting a decent connection to their homes. Sure the may be large business gains in the city but that will amount to realistically zero difference to their lives.

      Living or having a business in a city in no way means you ‘need or deserve’ better connectivity than anybody else. If the need and density you mention is there then surely its commercially viable, and shouldn’t require Tax aid. People on here are quick to say if you’re rural or building a new build then you should pay for it if you want it, but also seemingly quick to defend subsidy in a City where apparently the same should not apply.

    2. Sim says:

      Well said Gary..

    3. freddie says:

      He’s not able to come back to that – the great know it all is stuck for once. Nice to see like anyone gives a shit what he says anyway

    4. CarlT says:

      I don’t sit on here checking for responses, freddie, though you clearly cared enough to pop up and be obnoxious.

      If people actually read the article they’d note the main driver isn’t delivering broadband connectivity to homes and most businesses but one specific subset, alongside potentially wider connectivity for the region.

      “This is in order to increase the capacity of the ‘Cardiff Creative Network’ aimed at providing the gigabit broadband speeds required by the sector,” said the WG.


      This is sweet FA to do with residential services but is a local authority infrastructure investment to serve a specific, high profile business sector alongside assisting in delivery of council services. As people would note if they actually read the article rather than going off on one.

    5. CarlT says:

      I presume next complaint will be about Cardiff City Council spending money upgrading transport infrastructure?

      Zero difference. This cash is apparently to upgrade and expand the council’s existing duct and optical network. It isn’t delivering FTTP to loads of homes in Cardiff at the expense of the rest of the region.

      The same nonsense happens when LFFN is covered. People go off on one thinking residents are getting FTTP when the build is to serve public sector sites.

      Anything about cities getting funding for anything and people pop up complaining about the digital divide like these projects are for residential infrastructure. They aren’t, and can’t be. They may expedite its delivery in the future but they are nothing to do with the services you or I may buy.

      I could be wrong and people may simply fail to understand what they’ve read rather than not bothering to read it of course.

      Or they may read and understand but be cantankerous enough to use any and every possible opportunity to rant.

      A couple of people seem to do that here.

    6. dee.jay says:

      With respect, I read the article. There are other cities in Wales outside of Cardiff – why not provide this investment to all of the cities?

    7. The Facts says:

      @DJ – Like St Asaph.

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