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Lothian Broadband Expand FTTP Network Rollout to the Black Isle

Monday, Feb 12th, 2024 (5:50 pm) - Score 680

Scottish ISP Lothian Broadband (LBN), which is building a 10Gbps capable Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP / XGS-PON) network across rural parts of East Lothian, the Highlands and Fife, has announced that their network rollout is now being expanded across rural parts of the Black Isle area.

The provider, which also operates the Highland Broadband sub-brand across the Highlands region, originally began building a new full fibre network to cater for the East Lothian village of Gifford. But since then they’ve expanded into various other locations like Longniddry, Pencaitland, Gullane, East Linton, Pathhead, Alness, Tain, Invergordon, rural areas surrounding the city of Stirling and more – often with support from government broadband vouchers.

NOTE: LBN is supported by an investment of £50m from a mix of shareholders and the Scottish National Investment Bank (SNIB).

As confirm today, the next phase of their roll-out will also see them commence building across the Black Isle – starting this month. For those who don’t know, this is a peninsula within Ross and Cromarty, in the Scottish Highlands, which includes the towns of Cromarty and Fortrose, and the villages of Culbokie, Resolis, Jemimaville, Rosemarkie, Avoch, Munlochy, Tore, and North Kessock, as well as various smaller communities.

Residential customers of the service can expect to pay from £34.99 per month for an unlimited 100Mbps (symmetric) service on a 12 or 24-month term, which rises up to £49.99 (reduced from £74.99) for a 900Mbps service or £64.99 (reduced from £89.99) for 2000Mbps! Various phone, pay TV and mesh WiFi solutions can also be added at an extra cost.

Gavin Rodgers, CEO of LBN, said:

“It is thrilling to be able to continue to expand our ultrafast broadband network throughout the Highlands. While the Black Isle is the first new build of 2024, we will shortly announce further expansion plans which will further close the digital divide during 2024.

One of the most encouraging things about being the leading broadband provider in the Highlands is the reception we get from customers. In terms of data usage our customers in the Highlands use twice the UK national average showing the level of appetite there is for gigabit capable digital connectivity.”

Sadly, the announcement doesn’t say precisely which locations in the Black Isle will benefit, how many premises will be reached or when the local build might complete. But this is, more generally, said to form part of LBN’s “plans to give the entirety of the Highlands access to ultrafast broadband within the next three years” (i.e. by around the end of 2026).

The operator revealed last year that their network already passes approximately 10,000 premises – including both their old fixed wireless and new FTTP networks. But they’ll need to move faster in order to achieve their next goal of passing 100,000 premises by the end of 2024 and this latest expansion will no doubt help to achieve that target.

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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 X (Twitter), Mastodon, Facebook and .
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2 Responses
  1. Avatar photo Some Edinburgh Guy says:

    It seems a comment i posted last night got caught up in a spam filter. Probably the url i put in i guess. Anyway, if you look at the Scottish Road Works Online website, run by the commissioner, you can find out where Lothian Broadband are building their network this year. Ive compiled the list below:

    – Kingussie (including Insh, Drumguish and the extremely remote glens south of both those outer locations)
    – North Kessock
    – Munlochy
    – Avoch
    – Fortrose
    – Cromarty
    – Beauly (including Torgormack, Wester Balblair, Drumindorsair and a couple outer-lying hamlets)
    – Contin (including Marybank)
    – Strathpeffer (including Blairninich)
    – Barbaraville, Milton and Kildary (just outside Invergordon)
    – Hill of Fearn / Fearn
    – Portmahomack
    – Tain Town Center (including Edderton, which is past the Dornoch Firth bridge)
    – Bonar Bridge (including Ardgay)
    – Lairg (currently in build)
    – Dornoch (as far as I can tell, recently completed)
    – Golspie
    – Brora
    – Helmsdale

    Hope this helps some peeps in those areas who read this website.

  2. Avatar photo GaryH says:

    entirety…thats a bold target. Wish them and the residents luck

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