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Wessex Internet Begin South Somerset FTTP Broadband Rollout

Friday, May 14th, 2021 (9:32 am) - Score 1,032
wessex internet fibre optic rural hill deployment

Rural UK ISP Wessex Internet has this week started to deploy a new gigabit-capable Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) based broadband network in rural parts of South Somerset, which forms part of their state aid supported contract under the Connecting Devon and Somerset (CDS) programme.

The Phase 2 contract, which was originally awarded at the end of last year (here), is being supported by £4.7 million of public investment (partly from Building Digital UK) and will see the operator spending the next 3 years on a build that will expand their full fibre network to cover 3,618 premises (homes and businesses) in remote rural parts of South Somerset.

After a period of planning and surveying the first civil engineering work finally got underway this week in the village of Woolston, North Cadbury. The deployment is being split into 6 phases, with the first phase covering locations such as Woolston, North and South Barrow and Sparkford (more details are expected at the end of this month).

Hector Gibson Fleming, CEO of Wessex Internet, said:

“We are excited to announce the start of work that will bring ultrafast full fibre connectivity to the most remote parts of South Somerset. We believe that people living outside towns and cities have the same right to a speedy, efficient internet connection and we look forward to working with local communities on this exciting programme. In Woolston, we know that residents are struggling with typical speeds of less than 20 Mbps, which is not acceptable, and we are here to change this.”

Councillor David Hall, CDS Board Member, said:

“We’re delighted that Wessex Internet has started the rollout of Gigabit capable fibre in South Somerset, on behalf of Connecting Devon and Somerset. Over the next three years they will be delivering access to fibre broadband to some of the hardest to reach premises in the region, giving our local residents and businesses the future-proof internet connection they need.”

The provider has also posted a video of the work, which highlights their use of a vibratory mole plough and directional drilling.

Leave a Comment
7 Responses
  1. dave says:

    The only catch with Wessex Internet is that they are quite expensive!

    1. Ben says:

      I don’t think this is too surprising. Rural deployments are more expensive – these costs have to be recovered somewhere. I admit that we’re not used to seeing this because Openreach charges the same price for lines regardless of how long they are (although note that some exchanges have more expensive backhaul prices, which I believe drives things like Plusnet’s “low cost areas”).

  2. Chris Sayers says:

    @Mark Jackson , sadly I think the link is broken to their video on YouTube.

    1. Chris Sayers says:

      Scratch that now working…

  3. bob says:

    Amazing what tax money from the government money can buy

    1. Mike Pellatt says:

      Well, it’s better than providing taxpayers ninety as cheap investment capital for an infrastructure provider who could do it anyway. Which is what BDUK Phase 1 was all about.

    2. Fastman says:

      mike pellat

      Well, it’s better than providing taxpayers ninety as cheap investment capital for an infrastructure provider who could do it anyway. Which is what BDUK Phase 1 was all about.

      disinformation as you well know

      that why OMRs were done to ensure no commercial coverage gained government funding

      but lets not allow the narrative to get in the way of conspiracy theory

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