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Cumbria Broadband project meets Secretary of State
Friday 28 October 2011 09:23:31 by Andrew Ferguson

Whether a delegation of Council members and other people meeting the Secretary of State Jeremy Hunt is bringing universal coverage of broadband to Cumbria a step closer is not clear, but this is what Cumbria County Council is saying. There is little information on the subject of the meeting beyond:

"Connecting Cumbria is all about delivering superfast broadband for everyone in Cumbria – every resident, business, public sector organisation and visitor to our county. The meeting gave us the chance to update Government on the excellent progress being made on this project in Cumbria, especially how our innovative community led trials are going.

What I’m most pleased about is the fact that the visit gave us the opportunity to tell Mr Hunt face to face about our ambition for Cumbria. The potential of this project is huge and if successful will benefit every single person who lives in or visits our amazing county."

Cllr Liz Mallinson, the County Council Cabinet Member responsible for Connected Cumbria

The September 2011 newsletter for the project reveals more on where the project currently sits, and this is that potential bidders for the final contract has been parred down to three possibilities BT Global Services, Cable and Wireless and Fujitsu. News of who has won the bid and hopefully some details of their plans will be made in December 2011, with work commencing in April 2012.

The pace of progress seems slow, but with the various rules that exist to ensure the procurement process is done correctly there are times when it is just a case of waiting a couple of weeks for things to happen. The aim of the project bis to deliver a minimum of 2 Megabits per second (Mbps) across Cumbria, and we would like to hope the winning tender will include the ability to provide much faster speeds (25 Mbps and faster) to over 90% of businesses in the area.


Posted by cyberdoyle over 5 years ago
Its no wonder Cumbria is taking its time with this, they got bitten badly when Project access proved to be a big fail, they will want to get it right this time. Hopefully they will get fibre out to the rural areas and work inwards instead of letting telcos cherrypick the most lucrative areas and palming the rest off with 'alternative technology'. This is a chance to get it right and provide a futureproof solution rather than revisit the problem every decade.
Posted by craigbrass over 5 years ago
I have it on good authority that BT have been told they have won the contract privately and plan is to 21CN (ADSL2+ up to 24Mbps) all exchanges and add Kendal to Carlisle and Penrith for FTTC. Not sure how on earth this helps people at the end of long lines as ADSL2+ won't do any good for anybody not already getting 3-4Mbps on ADSL Max.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) over 5 years ago
ADSL2+ cannot meet the 2Mbps requirement, end of story.

Obviously a home/farm 4 miles down a single track road is going to be a prime candidate for satellite (if no big hill is in the way). An enterprising landowner though can trench the ducting for fibre in across their land at low cost though.
Posted by GMAN99 over 5 years ago
Good to see C&W involved I was starting to wonder just who BT were up against on these bids....
Posted by craigbrass over 5 years ago
@Andrew: They are getting around it by saying only a few will be left without 2Mbps or higher and those can get satellites.

@GMAN99: See my post. C+W don't have a chance.
Posted by themanstan over 5 years ago
What about PTP microwave solutions for outlying properties?
Posted by indigobananajam over 5 years ago
"Connecting Cumbria is all about delivering superfast broadband for EVERYONE in Cumbria" - Seriously? 2Mbps could never be described as superfast.
Posted by fastman over 5 years ago
craig think the winning bid for this will not be universal 2mg -- it will be as much as you can superfast using avaialable techology (greater than 25) but also ensuring no ones gets less than 2meg (but all 2 only) will not be the right answer

Craig your supposedly scenario doesn't come close to delivering that
Posted by fastman over 5 years ago
craig penrith was announced as part of BAU plans nearly a year ago i think
Posted by craigbrass over 5 years ago
@fastman: Regarding Penrith and Carlisle - they are already on FTTC rollout list. Kendal is being added because of the procurement and all the rest of the exchanges get ADSL2+. I have this on good authority so we'll see when everything comes pass. It would be difficult for anybody to challenge how many people don't get 2Mbps if you think about it, though. The council could easily say 'job done'.
Posted by basey over 5 years ago
This is great news for Cumbria .... 100% coverage would be brilliant for the County, it would give us the opportunity to develop in the modern world instead of us being left behind, like we have been for years.
It would be better if EVERYWHERE had fibre, Towns, Villages and completely Rural. But we are all realistic, it costs money. Although 2 mbps is a bit lame to be honest, I could get that 10 years ago on the Kendal exchange!
Posted by basey over 5 years ago
Is it really true Kendal is to become FTTC? I havent heard that before .... and ive been trying to find out if and when it would happen for years.... that would be awesome for Kendal!!
It wouldnt affect me because i'm already connected on the Kendal exchange at 18mb, but it would be brilliant news for my friends and family!
Posted by davlat over 5 years ago
re the FTTC rollout and Kendal being added, Barrow down in the South of the county is not yet even 21CN enabled yet is far larger than Kendal or Penrith and has a population not much short of Carlisle. With very substantial industry including one of the largest shipyards here, one has to ask what the criteria is?
Posted by craigbrass over 5 years ago
@basey: Not announced yet but come procurement completion by CCC and it will be...
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