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Freedom Fibre Plan FTTP Broadband for 100,000 UK Premises UPDATE

Sunday, May 2nd, 2021 (12:01 am) - Score 8,280
freedom_fibre_engineers_and_van

Alternative network ISP Freedom Fibre, which suddenly emerged earlier this year after we spotted TalkTalk harnessing their 1Gbps capable Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) broadband network (here), appears to have set itself the aim of reaching 100,000 subscribers in the North West (e.g. Cheshire, Manchester).

At the start of this year we still knew very little about FF or their plans for the future, in fact they didn’t even appear to have an active website. Since then, they’ve launched a website and partnered up with DZS to harness a range of FTTx solutions, including next generation 10 Gigabit PON services, to help build their network.

The operator was setup at the end of 2020 by Neil Mcarthur (CEO), who has a long history of working with various telecoms and technology companies, such as the Manchester Tech Trust, Nameco, Opal and many others. Neil previously also held senior roles at TalkTalk and their sibling FibreNation project, before CityFibre gobbled the latter up last year.

The new website doesn’t reveal much that we didn’t already know, but it does confirm that FF plans to act more as a builder and wholesale supplier for the “full fibre” network they’re now developing (so far the only known live location is in the large Cheshire village of Culcheth).

Last week a little more information slipped out after Ordnance Survey (OS) revealed that they were also helping to support FF’s deployment. OS works by providing such operators with the required location data accuracy, using Unique Property Reference Numbers (UPRN), to help them find properties and hubs that require better connectivity.

As part of that Freedom Fibre’s Chief Technical Officer (CTO), David Waine, revealed that they would aim to rollout their network to 100,000 subscribers in the North West by the end of 2022. We note that the ISP recently also raised £5m to support their initial plans via an allotment of new shares (here).

UPDATE 21st June 2021

Freedom Fibre has just put in an application for Code Powers from Ofcom, which should simplify their street works a bit. The document largely just confirms what we wrote above and states that their focus will be on building a full fibre network for use at wholesale by other ISPs in the North West of England.

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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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18 Responses
  1. Jono says:

    Engineers have been seen in Winwick / Winwick Park. According to people who have spoke to the engineers they have said it’s coming to Winwick really soon

    1. Mark Jackson says:

      No obvious activity in that village, yet. Unless you mean one of the other Winwicks, not the Warrington one?

    2. Jono says:

      Warrington Winwick. They have been surveying the village and said they expected it to be live pretty quickly.

    3. Martin says:

      I can confirm this. I spoke to the engineers myself as they were severing the village, they were very friendly. It was mentioned that they we’re planning for the service to go from Winwick all the way to Newton-le-willows. That was about a month ago, but they seemed confident it wouldn’t be too long before the service becomes available to sign up for.

      They mentioned using Openreach ducts and also running fibre from existing poles using additional units they attach.

    4. David Bratt says:

      FF are at work right now installing in Culcheth. Understand its their first big project. Im with Talktalk who can it be confirmed have an interest in FF??.A few months back TT ran an intense campaign to get people to sign up to some super speed deal. I didnt. Now TT are offering
      a free survey to check my system out.
      Have to suspect its sn initiative to use/-pay for FF in some capacity. Would welcome opinions. Thanks DB

  2. James™ says:

    Just wish we had more Full Fibre AltNets up here in Scotland

  3. GNewton says:

    “Just wish we had more Full Fibre AltNets up here in Scotland”

    Not just in Scotland. The whole of the UK is very backwards, nearly 4/5th does not have fibre broadband access. This primitive country is more than a decade behind of where it should be by now with regards fibre broadband utility.

    1. garlic bread says:

      Gigabit broadband coverage is 40% in the UK

    2. NE555 says:

      Not all gigabit is fibre

    3. Fastman says:

      Gnewton your becoming as repetetive as VFM (like a broken record)

    4. CarlT says:

      You’re welcome to emigrate.

  4. Anna says:

    They are out the gate quicker than Lightspeed – who are slow speed if the actual truth be told – they don’t seem to be doing much – however Quickline seem to have a boner for upgrades and are all over roadworks.org!

    And that’s in Spalding!

  5. Matt says:

    What’s the point of them keep reinstalling fibre in the same places over and over just to give them more options how about you come down here and start doing it down here

  6. Davy says:

    We live just outside a small village called Crank it’s near St Helens Merseyside, Openreach arrived 12 months ago and told us they are going to install fibre, we are lucky at the moment if we get 2mbs.
    We now have received a letter from them saying they have changed their minds, talk about dangling the carrot.
    Waste of space….

  7. Alan D'Brass says:

    I live in Harrow which is a very busy part of London and I have been with BT for over 30 years and I have been trying to get fibre broadband for years and what is really frustrating is other household on my road have fibre broadband but they keep telling me it is not available in my property yet. How is that possible.

    1. Badem says:

      sure its FTTP and not FTTC touted as ‘Fibre’

      Sometimes the FTTP rollout can see a street fed by 2 cabinets (E and W) and part of the street gets done first and the second done after.

      Or there could be an right of way issue between your property and the cabinet that would feed your property.

      The only company that can tell you why you dont have ‘Fibre’ is the company installing it so best to ask them

    2. TM says:

      I also live in harrow and I believe the whole area has fttc or virgin media.

      as long as you have telephone line/socket then you should be able to get FTTC and if you don’t have a line then virgin Media should be available.

      check the website Samknows

  8. Josh Welby says:

    I am Josh
    I live in London

    And these two Postcodes do not have BT at all, I have already checked
    the BT website

    E11 and IG9

    Luckily E11 Postcodes have Virgin,
    not sure on the IG9 Pistcodes though

    Most of London should have both
    BT and Virgin available plus Hyperoptic and Community Fibre

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