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Community Fibre Partnership - Estimated costs !!!

Pingman777

Casual Member
hi

I recently submitted our village application for community fibre partnership

I received an email from Openreach today with a cost of £155,640K.

This seems ridiculously high , given the next village has Fibre + there was another company putting fibre in the village . i spoke to the installers and they said it was Zayo . I looked them up , they look like a cloud company , no mention of residential

i thought there was Government money to support broadband that is less than 30mb

thoughts and any ideas
john
 

Mark.J

Administrator
Staff member
ISPreview Team
Yes Zayo are a corporate fibre builder, so they don't generally put fibre into homes (i.e. it's more likely they're supplying fibre capacity for another ISP).

As to the cost, I assume this was for FTTP and if so then costs of around £100k to £200k to cover an entire village are certainly not unheard of in a more rural setting (you don't provide any details so it's hard to say). Obviously this can depend upon the local layout and size of the village, as well as various other factors.

If it is rural then you should be able to get that quote down by harnessing vouchers under the Rural Gigabit Connectivity programme:


Alternatively you could wait to see what the Government does with their forthcoming £5bn investment in "gigabit-broadband", but that could still be years away.
 

Pingman777

Casual Member
Yes Zayo are a corporate fibre builder, so they don't generally put fibre into homes (i.e. it's more likely they're supplying fibre capacity for another ISP).

As to the cost, I assume this was for FTTP and if so then costs of around £100k to £200k to cover an entire village are certainly not unheard of in a more rural setting (you don't provide any details so it's hard to say). Obviously this can depend upon the local layout and size of the village, as well as various other factors.

If it is rural then you should be able to get that quote down by harnessing vouchers under the Rural Gigabit Connectivity programme:


Alternatively you could wait to see what the Government does with their forthcoming £5bn investment in "gigabit-broadband", but that could still be years away.
thanks for the reply

I have checked the link you have provided and type some of the postcodes in and I get the following message

Some addresses in this postcode may be eligible for a rural gigabit voucher

not very helpful message 'maybe'

Openreach have supplied me with 99 properties as this pretty much covers the village end to end . i have a yes from 54, so will approach the rest .

for the cost to be neutral all 99 will need to say Yes. I know I have a No from 5. Openreach did say the £155K was an estimate. hopefully it will come down,
 

Mark.J

Administrator
Staff member
ISPreview Team
Don't forget that if there are any businesses there, even home workers / sole traders (i.e. permanent ones rather than COVID-19 temporary), then you may also be able to harness the biggest voucher values for those.
 

Pingman777

Casual Member
Don't forget that if there are any businesses there, even home workers / sole traders (i.e. permanent ones rather than COVID-19 temporary), then you may also be able to harness the biggest voucher values for those.
hello Mark

i have now received an update from OpenReach

revised cost is

£244k for 133 houses. Interesting they are saying they will do all the houses so not really sure i bothered knocking on 80 houses !

we are consider rural so each house would get £1500 + 1 x business at £3500 , so we could raise £205k

what is the process to kick this off and can it be centrally managed or does every household have to apply for the vouchers

looking for good practices to copy

thanks
john
 

Mark.J

Administrator
Staff member
ISPreview Team
The funding is only as good as those properties that are willing to actually raise a voucher. If you can get agreement from locals then you can submit them as part of an Aggregated Pre Registered Package (APRP), but the work to do all this usually falls on whomever leads the campaign (you).

At least that's my understanding, but I've not done it myself so others may have more insight. Also be aware that the value of vouchers in some areas has now doubled:

 

Mark800

Member
I have written the following guide here for anyone looking to bring FTTP to their community. It includes the business case:

Guide for Rural Communities: how to get FTTP now

In my local village - Spaldwick in Cambridgeshire - we are in the middle of a demand-led Openreach Community Partnership, and FTTP will go live in 2021. You can see all the information we've used to get sign-ups here:

Spaldwick Broadband: Openreach demand-led scheme

I am regularly updating the information and adding photos as we progress.
 

busterboy1

Casual Member
I have written the following guide here for anyone looking to bring FTTP to their community. It includes the business case:

Guide for Rural Communities: how to get FTTP now

In my local village - Spaldwick in Cambridgeshire - we are in the middle of a demand-led Openreach Community Partnership, and FTTP will go live in 2021. You can see all the information we've used to get sign-ups here:

Spaldwick Broadband: Openreach demand-led scheme

I am regularly updating the information and adding photos as we progress.
Well done Mark, that's a great read. :)
 

Penybanc

Casual Member
hello Mark

i have now received an update from OpenReach

revised cost is

£244k for 133 houses. Interesting they are saying they will do all the houses so not really sure i bothered knocking on 80 houses !

we are consider rural so each house would get £1500 + 1 x business at £3500 , so we could raise £205k

what is the process to kick this off and can it be centrally managed or does every household have to apply for the vouchers

looking for good practices to copy

thanks
john
I’ve just overseen 71 properties provided with FTTP in a very remote valley in Snowdonia. A few points I picked up over the two years it took to get from the BT engineers plan to completion of the FTTP.
In no particular order
1. BT openreach received £119,000 via Gigabit Vouchers as the top up they required to subsidise their standard cost model.
2. 41 householders and businesses agreed to take part, obtain a voucher, and take the qualifying (rather expensive) 12 month contract (in our case a 24 month term was cheaper).
3. The 30 householders not taking a voucher still have the infrastructure provided. Some of 30 householders had applied for a voucher but their application was declined for various reasons.
4. Our original estimates from BT varied wildly. I managed to obtain a copy of the BT Engineers scheme drawings showing the proposed infrastructure. With that we managed to remove 2 properties requiring an additional 20 new telegraph poles. This brought the cost down within our voucher value.
5. The infrastructure when provided is not brought into the home. The scheme brings the fibre as far as the nearest Connection Point - usually the nearest telegraph pole. In our scheme the fibre cable was run along existing telegraph poles. One or two trenches and ducts were required.
6. BT Openreach cost model is, to say the least opaque, Ofcom should take an interest. Effectively in rural areas they are the monopoly provider self dig schemes apart which are very labour intensive and not practical where we are.
7. Make sure everyone who signs up knows the monthly cost of the contract. You really don’t want people changing their mind after signing up.
8. You will need a legal entity representing the Community. BT will not deal with individuals as far as the build contract is concerned. I drew up a very short statement for each applicant to indemnify the legal entity (CIC) against their failure to complete the voucher process or failure to take the qualifying contract.
9. Once the infrastructure is complete each voucher holder can take a qualifying contract from the ISP of their choice. Those that did not join the scheme can also secure a full fibre contract - but have no restrictions on contract term or speed.
10. You need someone who understands the scheme to draw up the necessary information sheets and forms for households to sign.
11. Don’t forget to allow for future building plots, barn conversions in the scheme. It is almost impossible to get BT to add properties into the scheme once the scheme has been drawn
Hope that background helps
 

Mary H

Member
I’ve just overseen 71 properties provided with FTTP in a very remote valley in Snowdonia. A few points I picked up over the two years it took to get from the BT engineers plan to completion of the FTTP.
In no particular order
1. BT openreach received £119,000 via Gigabit Vouchers as the top up they required to subsidise their standard cost model.
2. 41 householders and businesses agreed to take part, obtain a voucher, and take the qualifying (rather expensive) 12 month contract (in our case a 24 month term was cheaper).
3. The 30 householders not taking a voucher still have the infrastructure provided. Some of 30 householders had applied for a voucher but their application was declined for various reasons.
4. Our original estimates from BT varied wildly. I managed to obtain a copy of the BT Engineers scheme drawings showing the proposed infrastructure. With that we managed to remove 2 properties requiring an additional 20 new telegraph poles. This brought the cost down within our voucher value.
5. The infrastructure when provided is not brought into the home. The scheme brings the fibre as far as the nearest Connection Point - usually the nearest telegraph pole. In our scheme the fibre cable was run along existing telegraph poles. One or two trenches and ducts were required.
6. BT Openreach cost model is, to say the least opaque, Ofcom should take an interest. Effectively in rural areas they are the monopoly provider self dig schemes apart which are very labour intensive and not practical where we are.
7. Make sure everyone who signs up knows the monthly cost of the contract. You really don’t want people changing their mind after signing up.
8. You will need a legal entity representing the Community. BT will not deal with individuals as far as the build contract is concerned. I drew up a very short statement for each applicant to indemnify the legal entity (CIC) against their failure to complete the voucher process or failure to take the qualifying contract.
9. Once the infrastructure is complete each voucher holder can take a qualifying contract from the ISP of their choice. Those that did not join the scheme can also secure a full fibre contract - but have no restrictions on contract term or speed.
10. You need someone who understands the scheme to draw up the necessary information sheets and forms for households to sign.
11. Don’t forget to allow for future building plots, barn conversions in the scheme. It is almost impossible to get BT to add properties into the scheme once the scheme has been drawn
Hope that background helps
 

Mary H

Member
I’ve just overseen 71 properties provided with FTTP in a very remote valley in Snowdonia. A few points I picked up over the two years it took to get from the BT engineers plan to completion of the FTTP.
In no particular order
1. BT openreach received £119,000 via Gigabit Vouchers as the top up they required to subsidise their standard cost model.
2. 41 householders and businesses agreed to take part, obtain a voucher, and take the qualifying (rather expensive) 12 month contract (in our case a 24 month term was cheaper).
3. The 30 householders not taking a voucher still have the infrastructure provided. Some of 30 householders had applied for a voucher but their application was declined for various reasons.
4. Our original estimates from BT varied wildly. I managed to obtain a copy of the BT Engineers scheme drawings showing the proposed infrastructure. With that we managed to remove 2 properties requiring an additional 20 new telegraph poles. This brought the cost down within our voucher value.
5. The infrastructure when provided is not brought into the home. The scheme brings the fibre as far as the nearest Connection Point - usually the nearest telegraph pole. In our scheme the fibre cable was run along existing telegraph poles. One or two trenches and ducts were required.
6. BT Openreach cost model is, to say the least opaque, Ofcom should take an interest. Effectively in rural areas they are the monopoly provider self dig schemes apart which are very labour intensive and not practical where we are.
7. Make sure everyone who signs up knows the monthly cost of the contract. You really don’t want people changing their mind after signing up.
8. You will need a legal entity representing the Community. BT will not deal with individuals as far as the build contract is concerned. I drew up a very short statement for each applicant to indemnify the legal entity (CIC) against their failure to complete the voucher process or failure to take the qualifying contract.
9. Once the infrastructure is complete each voucher holder can take a qualifying contract from the ISP of their choice. Those that did not join the scheme can also secure a full fibre contract - but have no restrictions on contract term or speed.
10. You need someone who understands the scheme to draw up the necessary information sheets and forms for households to sign.
11. Don’t forget to allow for future building plots, barn conversions in the scheme. It is almost impossible to get BT to add properties into the scheme once the scheme has been drawn
Hope that background helps
Hi we are in the process of setting up a CFP and have just received a final quote for a large partnership. We are understandably nervous of our CIC becoming liable for any shortfall that may arise due to failure of individuals to complete the voucher process. You say you compiled a short indemnity. Am I right in thinking this meant each household had to sign the indemnity document and then they become liable for their own failure to complete.
 

Penybanc

Casual Member
Hi I attach some documents which I drafted and then used with our Community. Feel free to use them as you see fit. They are most probably not legally watertight - I’m not a lawyer but I hoped that they would make everyone think of the obligation they were entering into. So sorry cannot accept any liability for any legal shortcomings! For me it was important to let people know what the process was and what they would have to commit to financially. We had to guarantee a take up of a 24 month minimum 100MBps contract but I think the speed requirement might now have been reduced to 30Mbps. If so the document would need amending and bringing up to date. A legally watertight document would probably be pages long and might have put people off. We had a total of 71 properties and 41 properties eventually completed voucher scheme. Not all applications may be approved Around six applications were declined due to previous grants (apparently). Beware voucher applicants who might move during the post contract build process - once they have gone that application/voucher is probably lost.

I think that if BT Openreach realise that you have used your best endeavours to get an informed consent I cannot see them taking your CIC to Court. We required every applicant to join the CIC as a shareholder - nominal payment of £1 - thus that gave everyone a hypothetical interest in the project being financially viable.

Beware taking VOIP services - we had 7 households take up the service - none work correctly. My fibre connection was provided in Sept 20 and our phone still doesn’t work as designed.

Once the final fibre connection is made (Openreach only initially run fibre to the nearest pole/connection - the final connection is made by your chosen ISP) voucher applicants will receive an email asking for confirmation that the final qualifying connection has been made. So far (as far as I know) no other checks are undertaken. As far as I know all our successful voucher applicants took up the qualifying contract.

Our scheme did not require any capital contribution from the Community. Some people were surprised to find that those in the Community that chose not to take part were (for the most part) able to connect to the fibre infrastructure like everyone else. Information that is best not disseminated!

Double check if there any building plots/ property conversions - BT don’t like adding these to the scheme particularly once the contract is signed
If you need any other info - let me know.
 

Attachments

  • Broadband Contract Information.pdf
    80 KB · Views: 182
  • Speciment Broadband Application.pdf
    43.8 KB · Views: 138

Mary H

Member
I have written the following guide here for anyone looking to bring FTTP to their community. It includes the business case:

Guide for Rural Communities: how to get FTTP now

In my local village - Spaldwick in Cambridgeshire - we are in the middle of a demand-led Openreach Community Partnership, and FTTP will go live in 2021. You can see all the information we've used to get sign-ups here:

Spaldwick Broadband: Openreach demand-led scheme

I am regularly updating the information and adding photos as we progress.
Hi Mark,
I have read all your info avidly. Your website FAQs are excellent. We have just had a final quote for a large project. We were hoping you wouldn’t mind if we put your FAQs on our website as they are so good. We would of course reference you and your site. I emailed Jason a couple of days ago to ask him but as yet have not had a response.
 

Mary H

Member
Hi I attach some documents which I drafted and then used with our Community. Feel free to use them as you see fit. They are most probably not legally watertight - I’m not a lawyer but I hoped that they would make everyone think of the obligation they were entering into. So sorry cannot accept any liability for any legal shortcomings! For me it was important to let people know what the process was and what they would have to commit to financially. We had to guarantee a take up of a 24 month minimum 100MBps contract but I think the speed requirement might now have been reduced to 30Mbps. If so the document would need amending and bringing up to date. A legally watertight document would probably be pages long and might have put people off. We had a total of 71 properties and 41 properties eventually completed voucher scheme. Not all applications may be approved Around six applications were declined due to previous grants (apparently). Beware voucher applicants who might move during the post contract build process - once they have gone that application/voucher is probably lost.

I think that if BT Openreach realise that you have used your best endeavours to get an informed consent I cannot see them taking your CIC to Court. We required every applicant to join the CIC as a shareholder - nominal payment of £1 - thus that gave everyone a hypothetical interest in the project being financially viable.

Beware taking VOIP services - we had 7 households take up the service - none work correctly. My fibre connection was provided in Sept 20 and our phone still doesn’t work as designed.

Once the final fibre connection is made (Openreach only initially run fibre to the nearest pole/connection - the final connection is made by your chosen ISP) voucher applicants will receive an email asking for confirmation that the final qualifying connection has been made. So far (as far as I know) no other checks are undertaken. As far as I know all our successful voucher applicants took up the qualifying contract.

Our scheme did not require any capital contribution from the Community. Some people were surprised to find that those in the Community that chose not to take part were (for the most part) able to connect to the fibre infrastructure like everyone else. Information that is best not disseminated!

Double check if there any building plots/ property conversions - BT don’t like adding these to the scheme particularly once the contract is signed
If you need any other info - let me know.
Thank you so much for all your words of wisdom and the documents. It is very kind of you and much appreciated. it can be difficult finding all the info you need.
 

Tech2XS

Member
Hi, I'm running a community fibre programme for my village and we've had some strange costs estimated. Initially the project scope was 55 properties and the costs were £426 per household. The village is primarily along one road that already has fibre running along it. So far so good. We recieved a great deal of interest so expanded the scope to include additional houses along the same road (the fibre runs under their driveways) and after 5 months of chasing Openreach the cost estimate has risen to £1770 per household and the properties now number 111. There are a number of addresses on the lists that no longer exist or are annexes etc however Openreach have insisted that we must include every 'property' that is on their system despite it being out of date. Realistically we have around 90 houses in total. We've got interest from around 45 houses so we're a long way from being able to fund this despite the local top-up. During the 5 months, Openreach have even offered and provided FTTP to some of the houses. My question is, who oversees Openreach's costings as it feels the costs are being inflated?
 

Penybanc

Casual Member
To answer your question – no one to my knowledge oversees Openreach’s costs.
By way of comparison For our very rural scheme Openreach provided around 12 kilometres of cable to serve 71 homes at an excess cost of £113,000 to our community. Almost all of the cable was hung from existing telegraph poles (needless to say some lengths of cable now trail along the ground). There were a few ducts dug.
The cost you quote of £1770 per property is the Community’s share of the cost (Openreach refer to this as the Gap cost). This is the excess cost involved in providing the necessary infrastructure over and above Openreach’s standard cost model (whatever that is – they will not disclose it).
By way of comparison the Gap cost for our community was £1,591 per property. The infrastructure serves many farmhouses and cottages set well back from the road. I managed to weed out non-existent properties and add in a couple that had been missed plus a couple of barn conversions to be started during the contract period. Openreach cost the infrastructure necessary to serve the entire community whether they want a connection or not. We managed to remove two properties from the list that required around 20 new telegraph poles. That reduced the cost by a few thousand pounds.
I had no luck challenging Openreach’s costs despite correspondence at director level. But it is worth having a go – just in case. I would look at challenging the costs allocated to those properties passed by the existing cable. I managed to obtain a copy of the engineer’s infrastructure plan – you will see from the plan when you get it which properties are to be served and which not. You might then be able to negotiate.
We managed to get 43 (61%) owners to take up a voucher (there were several businesses inc farms that helped swell the total grant). We all had to take a relatively expensive 100Mbps contract. Now the voucher requirement has reduced to 30Mbps the contracts are probably not much more than most folk are already paying for a much slower service. We have found properties being sold and with access to full fibre attract those wanting to work from home. I reckon the added value arising to the average property is worth it.
Also double check that the properties close to the existing fibre are not already enabled. Our first quote included some properties already enabled… Remember the cost Openreach quote is to the nearest connection point (a telegraph pole in our case). The telegraph pole to house connection is covered by your chosen ISP provider.
I remain of the view that Openreach regularly overstate their costs knowing that ‘Gap’ funding will, in many cases, cover the difference. It makes good business sense to them.
 

Fido40

Member
Can I ask how long it took for OpenReach to provide a ball park figure? I applied on behalf of our little glen in Scotland (9 properties, all with businesses operated permanently from them) in early October and have received nothing since the initial emails up to the point where they said they were estimating the ball park figure and would be in touch. (Incidentally, I applied separately for the BT USO scheme in case that was a feasible alternative for me/us and was quoted £60-70K to bring fibre the 3 miles up from the village.) We don't have telegraph poles here - all the existing phone lines run underground with access hatches in the grass verge beside the road. When it rains heavily or snows, our 1MB broadband becomes virtually non-existent...
 

Peter S

Casual Member
Hi, I'm running a community fibre programme for my village and we've had some strange costs estimated. Initially the project scope was 55 properties and the costs were £426 per household. The village is primarily along one road that already has fibre running along it. So far so good. We recieved a great deal of interest so expanded the scope to include additional houses along the same road (the fibre runs under their driveways) and after 5 months of chasing Openreach the cost estimate has risen to £1770 per household and the properties now number 111. There are a number of addresses on the lists that no longer exist or are annexes etc however Openreach have insisted that we must include every 'property' that is on their system despite it being out of date. Realistically we have around 90 houses in total. We've got interest from around 45 houses so we're a long way from being able to fund this despite the local top-up. During the 5 months, Openreach have even offered and provided FTTP to some of the houses. My question is, who oversees Openreach's costings as it feels the costs are being inflated?
I suspect Openreach don’t particularly wish to be tied up with rural builds at the moment and are prioritising towns and cities where they are facing stiff competition from a host of smaller FTTP network builders funded by venture capital. If this is the case, this may be reflected in the current response times and pricing of rural builds.
 

Penybanc

Casual Member
Quotes were received for 73 properties.
Quote 1 June 2018 - £94,000 (not sure when the quote was requested as I inherited the project at this point.

Quote 2 also June 2018 - £137,265

Quote 3 November 2018 £119,000

Long delay now - whilst final engineering solution determined by Openreach. Engineers plans are dated 26 November 2018

A long wait then until

Quote 4 September 2019 £113,000

Contract received signed and returned October 2019.

First property connected July 2020

As far as I can see you will only get a ‘ball park’ figure until the final ‘contract’ stage when your Community Interest Company will be asked to sign on the dotted....

Keep pressing by email and escalate if you do not get the courtesy of a reply.
 

Penmore0404

Regular Member
I live on an Island off the west coast of Scotland. Our community is split, the village has a cabinet with a fibre connection and Openreach has converted premises in the village to firbre to the cabinet. All the other outlying premises are exchange only connections. There is underground trunking from the exchange for a couple of miles out of the village. A couple of years ago Openreach laid a firbre cable (about 25-30 mm dia) in the trunking to supply one of the other islands with fibre broadband. Does anyone know if it would be possible to break into the fibre cable to supply FTTP or would Openreach allow the community to have a fibre cable laid in their trunking to supply the outlying premises.
 
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