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Angus glens seek fibre broadband through co-operative
Wednesday 18 August 2010 15:55:07 by John Hunt

A residents' co-operative in Scotland is bidding to deploy fibre-broadband to the Angus glens to avoid them being left off the broadband fast lane when towns and cities in Scotland are upgraded. Around 2,500 home and businesses in the area have been surveyed ahead of a specially commissioned report which will outline details to locals. They are looking to fibre as a future-proof solution which should support their needs for 20 to 30 years, however this does mean the initial cost of installing the service is substantial as the properties to be covered are in an area of around 500 square miles.

"Current broadband access in the glens is rather patchy. Those close to telephone exchanges may get a connection meeting the minimum 2Mbps broadband set by the Digital Britain Report. Others further from the exchange are lucky to receive even a very basic 0.5Mbps service and some are only able to get a dial-up connection.

The Scottish Government's Broadband Reach project has made some improvements. However, as this is delivered by satellite it is less reliable than a fixed-line connection. In order to pursue setting up a fibre broadband network the group formed Angus Broadband Co-operative Limited as a community owned co-op.

This means that ownership and control are retained within the local community and all profits will be reinvested in the project or paid to members as a dividend. All members running the co-op at present are unpaid volunteers."

Geoff Hobson, (Director and Secretary) Angus Broadband Co-operative Ltd.

Some grant funding has already been obtained from local councils to help with the proposal which should bring 100meg broadband to every property in the areas of Kirriemuir Landward West, Kirriemuir Landward East and Inveresk Community Councils. Some meetings are to be held next week where local residents can drop in and find out more information. Further details are available on the Angus Broadband website.

Comments

Posted by Somerset over 6 years ago
'Those close to telephone exchanges may get a connection meeting the minimum 2Mbps'

Strange - Southmuir PO - 01575572363 on Exchange KIRRIEMUIR - Our test also indicates that your line currently supports an estimated ADSL Max broadband line speed of 7.5Mbps.
Posted by TaRkADaHl over 6 years ago
"Those close to telephone exchanges may get a connection meeting the minimum 2Mbps broadband set by the Digital Britain Report. Others further from the exchange are lucky to receive even a very basic 0.5Mbps service and some are only able to get a dial-up connection."

This statement really is irrelevant, it could have been said about anywhere in the country.

Given the distances involved, fibre'ing up 500 square miles for only 2500 prems is a bit OTT....

Only real choice tho, due to the location wifi would be difficult to implement.
Posted by Somerset over 6 years ago
Or - 013566482xx on Exchange EDZELL - Our test also indicates that your line currently supports an estimated ADSL Max broadband line speed of 8Mbps.
Posted by CARPETBURN over 6 years ago
^^^ Are these BT guesstimate figures you are posting Somerset? I thought we all knew you cant take any notice of them, they still think my line only does 4Mb. BT checker estimates have never been a relaible accurate source of what speed an area or line will get.
Posted by cyberdoyle over 6 years ago
agree with CB, the BT checker has always been a joke.
Good for the Glens, Scotland and Wales taking action. I vote we have an English Assembly to help us out.
Oh wait. Isn't parliament in England? What about having a digitalbritain agenda that includes us? What about starting with a level playing field then we can build it ourselves? All these people doing stuff, wanting connectivity, and yet Somerset still insists they already have it? weird.
Posted by AndrueC over 6 years ago
I agree that the checker can be inaccurate but Scotland obeys the same laws of physics as England and Wales (last I heard anyway). Anyone whose cable length is less than 2.5km (or about 33db attenuation) will get full speed on ADSL. Anyone within 4.5km of an exchange should get at least 2Mb/s.

Hence, yes, that person's comments are pointless. They apply everywhere.
Posted by CARPETBURN over 6 years ago
Id hardly call the comments pointless, it explains the whole reason for the project.
Posted by New_Londoner over 6 years ago
Surely a better place to start for such a dispersed community would be satellite? Fibre seems an extreme solution, especially if public funds are involved.

(I wonder what the state aid implications might be given some of the above posts show that there is an existing servie in place supporting pretty reasonable speeds, at least to some locations in the area?)
Posted by herdwick over 6 years ago
The concept of an estimate is probably too difficult for some.

I notice that the news item is a number free zone, how much money are they asking for ? £2.5 million ?
Posted by New_Londoner over 6 years ago
Re-reading the story properly (and paying attention this time!), noted satellite is already on offer, so ignore earlier comment about why go to fibre for a relatively dispersed community.
Posted by Somerset over 6 years ago
Where have I said all these people have connectivity? Just showing that the press release was wrong saying 2M when it could be 'up to 8M'.
Posted by CARPETBURN over 6 years ago
quote"The concept of an estimate is probably too difficult for some."
No i understood perfectly hence me calling them "BT guesstimate figures" The area for the project is quote "properties to be covered are in an area of around 500 square miles." So a few number checks wouldnt give an accurate assessment of speeds available even if the BT checker was always right.
Posted by CARPETBURN over 6 years ago
quote"
I notice that the news item is a number free zone, how much money are they asking for ? £2.5 million ?"

I dont see why that matters, BT and other companies are taking local council money to roll out their "fibre" services to some areas so why are you concerned this organisation/project is doing the same?
Posted by herdwick over 6 years ago
"The amount of money doesn't matter" ? Fool.

Is it good value for money ?
Posted by CARPETBURN over 6 years ago
Is BTs roll out good value where local councils have to pay? IMO it isnt, as no figure is mentioned for this neither you or i can say if its good value or not, 100Mb though is atleast real next gen.
Posted by CARPETBURN over 6 years ago
Oh and keep your name calling to yourself, cos once i start down that road in return you wont be able to take it return and will go running to staff crying im a nasty man.
Posted by herdwick over 6 years ago
This coop has had about £15k of public funds thus far, without connecting anybody. It's an interesting project and it will be good to see what the proposed costs, subsidies and end user charges are. Also it will be interesting to see if they get any ISPs on board to run over an open access network, which I suspect the public funding will mandate.

BT received £13k in public funds for Iwade to FTTC 1,350 homes and businesses, obviously in a much smaller area with a slower technology.
Posted by herdwick over 6 years ago
LOL @ the playground bully posting.
Posted by ianeiloart over 6 years ago
It's a co-operative of local people, bidding for funding from their local authority. The value for money judgement should be made locally, not against what the same money might achieve in a different area.
Posted by CARPETBURN over 6 years ago
quote"This coop has had about £15k of public funds thus far, without connecting anybody."
I dont know the amount but lets say you are right and then look at your other comment.....
quote"BT received £13k in public funds for Iwade to FTTC 1,350 homes and businesses"
Really! A link to prove everyone in Iwade will take BT FTTC! Nobody is connected there yet either. Even when they are id like to know how you know every iwade business and resident will take the service.
Posted by CARPETBURN over 6 years ago
What you have actually just said is BT have taken almost the same amount for Iwade, not connected anyone YET, and intend to give them a slower service. All that said your comparisson is pointless anyway given its a different tech, different area and different company involved.
Posted by CARPETBURN over 6 years ago
quote"LOL @ the playground bully posting."
Who have i bullied? I simply stated if you want to go down the road of name calling fine. Just remember though dont do crying to staff when you cant take it in return like you normally do. Unlike some here i can dish out and take the name calling without crying to staff about how horrible someone is.
Posted by cyberdoyle over 6 years ago
let us set a new precedent here, everyone is entitled to their opinons. No need to name call at all. Let us not go there.
If I can resist it so can the rest of you. ;)
lets ave a cuppatea.
Posted by TaRkADaHl over 6 years ago
I like lamp
Posted by newbuilder22 over 6 years ago
I assume Somerset has no knowldege of the Geography of the Angus Glens. The Edzell exchange is at the foot of the Glens as is the Southmuir/Kirriemuir Post Office. These areas are populated villages and towns.

Try Menmuir, DD9 7**, gives 0.52Mbps
or PH11 8**, this also gives 0.52.
AS Carpetburn says, this is a very rough guide, especially as I used post codes.

Yes some in the Glens are reaching over 5 Meg but literally 5 min drive and you don't get it.

Posted by newbuilder22 over 6 years ago
I appreciate that there are other areas in the UK that are the same but the reason this news article has hit the headlines is because they are doing something about it. I am sure if it was England and a small community doing something the same would be intimated.

Please also remember that random entering of phone numbers for this area could actually be searching in the nearest town. The area STD code for The Glens shares the same as the nearest town (01575 or 01356) the next digit in the phone is also the same.
Posted by newbuilder22 over 6 years ago
Finally have a look here,
http://www.angusglens.co.uk/map/index.php

Somerset has speedtested Kirriemuir. The Glens are marked on this map. There is only single track roads in some of the Glens and as the population is spread out so is the Broadband! or lack of it.
Posted by Somerset over 6 years ago
I was just pointing out the max is 8M, not 2M.

It will be interesting to see what the solution is.
Posted by New_Londoner over 6 years ago
@newbuilder22
Given your description of the geography and demographics, FTTP would not seem like the most obvious solution - expensive per head in such a sparsly populated area vs. other options.
Posted by CARPETBURN over 6 years ago
What would be a cheaper option? FTTC certainly wouldnt solve all speed issues in an area like that as some would probably still end up being miles from the nearest cabinet.
Posted by New_Londoner over 6 years ago
@CB
To be honest, was thinking of wireless or mobile as a more sensible option to consider, rather than installing fibre to lots of (probably) fairly isolated properties.
Posted by CARPETBURN over 6 years ago
Wireless and mobile doesnt operate at very high speed does it? Wireless wouldnt be cheap in an area like that which is "around 500 square miles". Mobile internet.... I bet in areas up there they hardly get a mobile phone signal let alone a mobile service that will provide more than a couple of Mbs bandwidth.
Satelite is a potential option but would still be slower than FTTC or FTTP and why should just those people have to pay the fortune satelite costs.
Posted by newbuilder22 over 6 years ago
Please also remember it, I believe, is in a national park. I might be wrong but does that not mean no masts for mobile, where as fttc is along existing routes.
Posted by CARPETBURN over 6 years ago
^^^ Im not sure on that but i agree satelites or masts all over any large area of natural beauty would in places take away that beauty and be replaced by eyesores. Ive never visited so dont know what the scenery is like but i bet in some places its stunning, shoving a mast in the middle of that view though would to an extent ruin it.
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