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CityFibre Re-adds Wakefield to their UK FTTP Broadband Rollout

Wednesday, January 19th, 2022 (12:01 am) - Score 1,632
CityFibre-Wakefield

The city of Wakefield in West Yorkshire (England), which a couple of years ago was quietly removed from CityFibre’s UK rollout plan for a 1Gbps capable Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) broadband ISP network, has now been re-added to their programme and the first build is just getting started.

For those with a long enough memory, CityFibre has had a Dark Fibre style network in Wakefield since they acquired it from KCOM in 2015 (here), although this was largely only used to serve local businesses and public sector sites. Suffice to say that nobody was surprised then the operator announced, in 2018 (here), that the city would also be one of the first to benefit from their wider UK residential rollout of a new FTTP network.

NOTE: Cityfibre is 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.

However, in 2020 and without any explanation, CityFibre suddenly removed Wakefield from their plans, which is despite the fact that they were already deploying in virtually all of the surrounding areas. Even now, the city remains stubbornly absent from their visual rollout map of the United Kingdom (pictured – top), where the green patches reflect those in-build.

The good news, as first spotted by one of our readers (credits to Carl), is that the operator has started building in the city. At present most of the activity looks set to take place in the west side of the city, either side of Dewsbury Road (A638), with the bulk of work kicking off between February and March 2022. We don’t currently know which contractor has been chosen for the job, although CityFibre’s nearby builds are using O’Connor Utilities, and we can spot some similarities.

But the operator will face some local competition from gigabit-capable rivals in Wakefield, with Virgin Media having already covered most premises with their Hybrid Fibre Coax (HFC) network and Openreach actively expanding their FTTP availability. We should add that Virgin Media has also selected the city to help test their new FTTP (XGSPON) upgrade programme (here). Netomnia (YouFibre) also seems to have plans for the city too.

The rollout forms part of CityFibre’s wider £4bn investment programme, which has already covered 1 million UK premises with FTTP and aims to have 8 million “substantially completed” – across 285 cities, towns and villages (c.30% of the UK) – by the end of 2025 (here).

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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
5 Responses
  1. Danny says:

    About time Wakefield started getting fttp. It always puzzled me why cityfibre removed Wakefield when it was doing the surrounding areas as Wakefield would allow them to link all their networks together.

  2. Anonymous1 says:

    Is Vodafone providing broadband from city fibres network? Which other companies will make use of the network?

  3. Jason says:

    I hope they’ll finally expand more in South Leeds, too… Got all the main roads covered but none of the houses along those roads are covered

    1. anonymous says:

      They are building in South Leeds still – hopefully connecting everything up so that they can provide FTTH. A fair bit of the network at the moment is backbone ring and some of it in South Leeds is only being used for mobile masts at the minute.

      Location: From junction Middleton Road to junction Belle Isle Circus.
      Description: [Utility repair and maintenance works] Excavate approx 620m of footway and carriageway with 1 x crossing to build chambers and conect into existing network.
      Start Date: 21/01/2022
      End Date: 03/02/2022

  4. Jason says:

    yeah cheers mate… I’m passing by that place most days… can’t wait for them to cover all of south leeds… at the moment I keep seeing their builds popping up in random places – but as you said it seems to be more a backbone ring, schools and mobile masts at the moment… just wonder if it wouldn’t make more sense to connect the houses along the rings as well while they’re at it?

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