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CityFibre Start GBP62m FTTP Broadband Build in Sunderland

Monday, August 16th, 2021 (12:18 pm) - Score 1,488
CityFibre Trencher machine

CityFibre UK has today officially started the construction phase for their £62 million rollout of a new gigabit-capable Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) broadband ISP network in the coastal city of Sunderland (Tyne and Wear), which is being supported by civil engineering contractors from MAP Group.

The announcement doesn’t tell us anything about which areas will be the first to benefit, when they’ll go live or how many premises will be covered, although the local build is expected to reach completion by the end of 2025. However, local planning data reveals that they’re starting work around the Southwick and Hendon areas.

Each area (e.g. streets) will usually take just a few weeks to complete; however, construction teams will typically only be outside each home for 2-3 days and CityFibre will normally be in touch by mail ahead of any work starting.

All of this forms part of Cityfibre’s £4bn commitment, which aims to cover 1 million UK premises with their FTTP network by the end of 2021 (over 650,000 have already been reached) and then 8 million premises are expected to be “substantially completed” across 285 cities, towns and villages – c.30% of the UK – by the end of 2025 (here); CityFibre may yet extend this target to 10m premises (here).

NOTE: Cityfibre is being supported by various ISPs, such as Vodafone (Gigafast Broadband), TalkTalk (Future Fibre), Zen Internet, Giganet and others, but they aren’t all live or available in every location yet.

Jason Legget, CityFibre’s City Manager for Sunderland, said:

“I’m immensely excited and proud to see work getting underway in Sunderland. The city has truly embraced the potential of full fibre and has a robust plan in place to be a genuine leader in smart city technology.

For residents, it’s important to remember that any short-term disruption will pay off tremendously in the long-term – once the network’s built, it will serve the community’s connectivity needs now and for decades to come.”

Naturally, an operator like CityFibre can’t enter an area like this without facing some local competition from gigabit-capable rivals, particularly from Virgin Media, which has already covered the vast majority of the area, and they’re building more FTTP into parts they’ve missed (northern areas). Openreach, Hyperoptic and OFNL also have a tiny bit of FTTP, but nothing to write home about.. yet.

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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.
Leave a Comment
6 Responses
  1. ianh says:

    Its a bloomin impressive rollout. They are everywhere!

    Hopefully they don’t all converge and ram the prices up down the line (likely)

    1. Rich says:

      Shame that where they are, they seem to be mostly spinning their wheels, and releasing very little data.

      Ipswich has had one batch of properties released to service, and then endless roadworks with no additional areas.

      They dug up roads near me, then marked out up to next door, never dug to next door (I’m on a corner, next door is technically a different road even though it’s a semi and our houses are attached, they haven’t actually dug that road at all just painted lines all over it months ago), and now there is no sign of anything for like a mile around me.

      It’s all very frustrating. I’m convinced their timetables have slipped significantly.

    2. Ad says:

      @Rich – where are you looking for availability? I just tried a couple of streets in Ipswich that I know were dug recently. CityFibre’s website says available and shows the three providers, but Zen is only listing FTTC for them. It looks like Zen have not updated their systems with the latest coverage.

      It looks like most of the Town North and West of the centre is now live, but not all is showing on Zen.

  2. Steven Brown says:

    I was near the Sunderland north exchange last week and they were digging the road/path next to it.

  3. Curious says:

    Curious to know, how many subs are connected to city fiber via their CP’s? Just wondering …..

  4. Gavin says:

    This is good news that CF are continuing their rollout at pace.

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