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Cityfibre to Start £32m FTTP Broadband Rollout in Barnsley UK

Wednesday, January 6th, 2021 (2:30 pm) - Score 1,992
cityfibre street works engineer fttp

Cityfibre has today begun to invest £32 million in order to rollout a new 1Gbps capable Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) based broadband ISP network to “nearly every home and business” in the South Yorkshire (England) town of Barnsley, with work already underway.

The project forms part of the operator’s wider £4bn investment programme (here and here), which currently aims to cover around 1 million premises by the end of 2021 and then 8 million across 100+ cities and towns (c.30% of the UK) – the latter target is expected to be “substantially completed” by the end of 2025.

NOTE: Cityfibre’s network is supported by various ISPs, such as Vodafone (Gigafast Broadband), TalkTalk and Zen Internet among others, but they aren’t all live or available in every covered town/city yet.

The contracted civil engineering firm for the project in Barnsley, Nmcm (they’re also working with Cityfibre in Halifax), has already begun to build in the Redbrook area of the town (they usually target 85%+ FTTP coverage for completion).

Natalie Ward, CityFibre’s City Manager for Barnsley, said:

“CityFibre is leading the charge in South Yorkshire when it comes to delivering gigabit-capable broadband and Barnsley is next in line to reap the benefits of this transformative technology.

As we’ve all seen this year, digital technology is increasingly important for maintaining connections. Full fibre will help to make that simpler than ever while enabling smart home technology and allowing people to work from home with ease. It will also play a pivotal role in growing and protecting the local economy, supporting businesses as they implement digital solutions.”

As usual you can’t enter a large town like Barnsley without facing some local competition from gigabit-capable rivals, particularly from Virgin Media, which has already covered the vast majority of the area. Openreach has also been building a bit of FTTP in some areas and Hyperoptic has a tiny presence in a few MDUs.

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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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27 Responses
  1. John Walker says:

    Do cityfibre announce plans, or just locations as they come?
    I’d like to see if they have any plans for my area, since they’re next to us in Cambridge.

    1. John Walker says:

      aaand now i feel silly for not clicking the links in the article and finding the answer to my question. doh.

  2. Flatcap and Whippets says:

    This is great news.

    I live on an estate here with ~250 houses and Virgin Media came in late 2019/early 2020 IIRC and put their network in the top half of the estate, stopping three houses short of mine with no evidence that they intend to extend (“evidence” only being roadworks planned on the estate – zilch).

    To cap it off, BT have FTTP available for the bottom half of the estate, but stop at the bottom of my street.

    Both of these things put my street in a no-mans-land of sub 30Mbps FTTC with outlandish costs quoted by OR to get my street FTTP’d.

    While I doubt that CityFibre will be bringing their network here, it’s good news for competition in the area, and the benefits that brings.

    1. Fastman says:


      Both of these things put my street in a no-mans-land of sub 30Mbps FTTC with outlandish costs quoted by OR to get my street FTTP’d.

      so i assume you dod not ask the rest of your community to see if you do something together to spread the gap

      how did you get a cost and from where and how

    2. Flatcap and Whippets says:

      Fastman – I got a quote from Cerberus covering over 30 properties. It would have been £1020 per household.

    3. NE555 says:

      Try a Community Fibre Partnership. Openreach makes a larger contribution to a CFP as compared to FTTPoD.

      Also, if you can show enough interest, they may turn it into a “demand-led” CFP which means nobody has to pay anything up-front – when sufficient demand is registered, they start the build anyway.

    4. John says:

      You say that like a demand led CFP is definitely possible. It may not be.

      The demand led CFP may only be viable in areas where vouchers are available.
      The whole point is OpenReach pre register the vouchers and they take the risk.

      Rural gigabit vouchers are only available in certain areas.

      Is Barnsley considered rural?
      If not I’m not so sure that’s the best suggestion.

    5. A_Builder says:

      The other issue is your street ducted?

      If your street is direct buried it might be why it was not done?

      Old OR FTTPoD prices were all over the place and often completely wrong when challenged. It always slightly surprised me that OR didn’t put a bigger team onto FTTPoD as whilst is a less efficient business model that doesn’t really matter as they are able to recover the full economic costs. After all it is another way of building their network out on someone else’s dollar.

    6. John says:

      “Old OR FTTPoD prices were all over the place and often completely wrong when challenged”

      You what?

      There has only been 2 pricing models.

      Fixed price based on distance bands from the Agg Node was the old model.
      They couldn’t be challenged. It was fixed.

      Even if your line was direct buried and you needed 500m of ducting buried on a carriageway (at £112 per meter) you paid OpenReach a fixed price.
      Tricky installs during this time saved an absolute fortune.

      They then switched to the current pricing model of desktop quotes and surveys.

      I’m not sure what you’re talking about with regards to old pricing.

      A direct buried line would cost much more under the current pricing. It was a fixed price under the old pricing.

  3. Mark says:

    I hope the rollout and go live dates doesn’t take too long, been a long time virgin media customer on M350 but the higher upload speed will be a huge benefit for me over what VM offer

    1. Anna says:

      I can’t even get VM where I am – it’s literally on the main road 6 feet away!

    2. Glenn says:

      Is there a road between you and the last house as. I might be able to help

  4. Anna says:

    OUCH!! With Virgin nearby and nothing else I took out a 100mbps line at £259 a month for 36 months and I am 4 months in! – There was no build cost thankfully but dam! I wonder if they will let me out of it!”?

    1. Frasier says:

      Who did you take it with? Asking for a friend that looks a lot like me.

    2. NE555 says:

      > There was no build cost thankfully but dam! I wonder if they will let me out of it!

      In short, no, because the build cost was spread over the 36-month contract.

      They might negotiate a price to buy yourself out (although are not obliged to). Even if they do, you’ll end up paying the whole build cost as a lump sum, plus some proportion of their lost revenue over that period.

      Remember that a leased line is a top-flight business service, with no contention, usually unlimited usage (no “fair usage policy”), and a repair time measured in hours rather than days.

  5. Anna says:

    That’s a lot of Jan/Feb/March/April on the map!


    1. SimonR says:

      Pretty normal for CF, to be honest. On a good road they can make a lot of progress quickly. Did my side of the street start to finish in about a day, and there’s several teams on it.

      Unfortunately, there can sometimes be a wait for it to go live as a section is complete and connected to the main network (roadworks early November here, hopefully go live some time in February). This is two years after our city’s project started, so you’re lucky if you’re in one of the early zones.

    2. Anna says:

      They aren’t covering my road which is a mile away – so i will have VM 6 feet away and CF 1 mile away – But I hope that changes and one my leased line end in 2023 they might have expanded (I might even add it on if not as 1Gbps is way too expensive on the LL side of things – £603 a month) so if anyone whines CF charge too much for 1Gbps both ways – chew on that little bit of info!

      By the time you factor in the VAT I pay £333.10 a month for 100/100!

    3. Nigel says:

      where did you get the map Anna ? I live by Locke Park – and id like to know the plans for here ….

    4. Nigel says:

      not to worry i found one.network
      looks like they’ve only got plans for North Barnsley at the moment
      Like you Anna VM have a fibre in my street – there is a manhole cover outside my house – but they cant connect my property

  6. Barnsley says:

    Hope they aren’t planning on using any EU nationals to help deploy this in Barnsley.

    Locals may object.

    1. John says:

      Hopefully they are employing anyone without bias.
      Hopefully nationality and race makes no difference.

      EU nationals here before the brexit cut off have just as much right to a job as anyone else.

      Horrible comment.

  7. Anna says:

    I am a mile from Redbrook and I registered last night only to be told today that they aren’t doing my area! They must be doing a virgin media and only doing half of Barnsley!

  8. Dave says:

    Never, I’ve just signed up for another 18 months with Virgin too. Downloads fine @ 600 but I need faster uploads while working from home, VM is only around 45, I presume City Fibre is much higher?

    1. Mark says:

      Cityfibre is symmetrical so your upload is the same as download, on the top tier it’s 1Gbps up and down

    2. Anna says:

      @Dave – Can’t get VM where we are in Words common – Cityfibre are also not doing this part of Barnsley apparently! You do have 28 days to get out of VM as well as the regular price rises

      One.network says between now and April they are building

  9. Foxy says:

    And Yet no sign of coming anywhere near Cudworth or Darfield… what a joke

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