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CityFibre Begins GBP30m FTTP Broadband Rollout in St Helens

Thursday, June 9th, 2022 (12:22 pm) - Score 984
cityfibre Toby Box photo

CityFibre has today broken the first ground on their £30m investment to deploy a new gigabit-capable Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) broadband ISP network across the large town and borough of St Helens in Merseyside (England), which aims to cover most of the local homes and businesses by 2025.

The first civil engineering work began in the Peasley Cross area and is being delivered by contractor O’Connor Utilities Ltd. Each area will usually take a few weeks to complete, however, construction teams will typically only be outside each home for 2-3 days, and it may then take longer before the first services start to become available via a supporting ISP.

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.

The deployment is part of the operator’s wider £4.9bn investment project, which has so far enabled their full fibre network to cover 1.7 million UK premises – with 1.5m ‘Ready For Service‘ via a supporting ISP (here). The aim is to cover up to 8 million premises – across around 285 cities, towns and villages (c.30% of the UK) – by the end of 2025 (here), but they also plan to reach into rural areas via Project Gigabit (here).

Julie Derbyshire, CityFibre’s Area Manager for St Helens, said:

“Today marks the start of an exciting new chapter for St Helens. Our full fibre network will completely transform the digital capabilities of the town and bring a whole wealth of benefits to residents and businesses alike, including unbeatable home-working and digital entertainment experiences.

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 for decades to come.”

In terms of gigabit-capable competition in the town, Virgin Media (VMO2) already covers the vast majority of premises and Openreach appear to be expanding their rival FTTP network in the area too. On top of that, we note that Grain has also included St Helens on their own rollout plan and the ITS Technology Group are deploying to some fibre for local businesses.

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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. TALKTALK HATER says:

    I live in Plymouth where Cityfibre are supposed to be connecting Plymouth! Anyone have any idea where is live and where is going live and when?

    1. Anon says:

      one.network shows lots of work around the big Asda in Plymouth – checking a random postcode it says CityFibre are here you’ll soon be able to sign up with an ISP. So sounds like some houses are ready but they are still getting ISPs connected?

  2. STH says:

    I live a few minutes walk away from this area! However ITS were not seen there today.

    ‘ITS’ have visibly been digging up several kilometres of St. Helens for the past few months. They don’t seem to be leaving any house terminations like toby boxes. This must be core network or private work/dark fibre for mobile telcos.

    ‘ITS’ have laid ducting all the way from M62 motorway along the B5419, past Marshalls Cross BT Exchange LVMSX, continuing past Sherdley Park down to Peasley Cross where there is a new MBNL 5G lamp-post mast waiting to be connected. Fibre is then going from this mast down past the Hospital to Saint Helens Rugby Stadium (Warrington Old Road) and presumably heading into the town centre…

    3UK+EE (MBNL) have installed a load of 4G+5G monopoles around St Helens, pretty sure ‘ITS’ are only doing this work connecting masts but they’re yet to go live after being in-situ for at least 6 months+

    One site (STH17641 – Marshalls Cross Road) was sprayed with “DEATH TOWER!” within weeks of being installed. The phone-clamped-in-hand luddites are out in force! – Haha!

    You do see people working on these sites quite a lot so must be nearing completion.

    ‘ITS’ appear to be doing a big loop to cover all these 5G sites.

    If anyone’s interested: Search St Helens council planning and use the search term “TELPA” that seems to bring all the newer-type mast applications up.

    So, are CityFibre actually behind the all this work? I’ve also noticed “NEOS Networks” doing work around LVSAI (Saint Helens BT Exchange, in the town centre)

    1. An Engineer says:

      All CityFibre work will have as its promoter CityFibre Metro Networks Ltd.

      ITS and Neos are other companies. Neos have a national fibre network CityFibre and many others use, https://neosnetworks.com/ ITS run their own network https://www.itstechnologygroup.com/.

      Their work definitely isn’t CityFibre.

  3. JOK says:

    ITS have also been digging in Widnes for around the past 6 months. Like St Helens, Widnes is part of the Liverpool City Region, thus, I assume the current activity in St Helens and Widnes is related to ‘LCR Connect’

    https://www.ispreview.co.uk/index.php/2021/02/30m-deal-sees-its-rollout-full-fibre-across-liverpool-city-region.html

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