There may be trouble brewing in parts of Cumbernauld which has the M80 running through the heart of it. On one hand the southern side of the motorway has widespread availability of Virgin Media cable broadband and FTTC from Openreach, but cross the motorway and there is almost no cable broadband and from what we can see probably three (near Earl's Hill, Blackwood Road and Carrickstone Road) fibre cabinets providing service.
The problem of Cumbernauld is in the news because of a local press story about the area being excluded from £700,000 of funding from the North Lanarkshire Council and Scottish Government. The exclusion arises because of maps issued by the Scottish Government and subsequent cross referencing to identify areas that would benefit the most economically from further investment.
"The Government provided broadband maps showing areas to be commercially developed for high-speed next generation broadband.
We cross-referenced all these areas with the council’s Local Plan to identify priority areas which might require financial assistance to allow them to benefit. Our aim is to invest in broadband with the aim of maximising economic impact.
We are very well aware of the concerns of Cumbernauld residents and have passed their comments and submissions to the Scottish Government."Paul Jukes North Lanarkshire Council’s executive director of Environmental Services
With the Openreach FTTC roll-out not complete it is possible that there is in-fill planned for the Cumbernauld area which will see all the cabinets enabled on the exchange, but if this was the case then the authorities should have communicated this to the local residents. In terms of broadband speeds they appear to be in the 1 to 2 Mbps range for the affected area and many would have assumed that only a small amount of investment would be needed to benefit these slow streets as FTTC was already deployed in the area.
Most English local authorities have planned their maps down to postcode level, but this issue in Cumbernauld does carry the small suggestion that the Scottish Goverment with its very high level view may have worked to a exchange level map.