While some would rather all the BDUK contracts be ripped up and go out to tender with BT explicitly excluded from bidding, we suspect that the great silent majority are just more interested in knowing when the improvements (no matter how small) will make it to their area.
So after getting an email from a resident of Knightwick over night, we were surprised to find out that Worcestershire County Council has announced its next phase of its broadband improvements (congratulations to Mark on ISPreview for spotting the PDF).
Communities to benefit in the next phase of roll-out: Belbroughton, Blakedown, Chaddesley Corbett, Clows Top, Cutnall Green, Eckington, Elmley Castle, Great Witley, Hanley Swan, Hartlebury, Kempsey, Knightwick, Leigh Sinton, Ombersley, Peopleton, Powick, Rock, Upton Snodsbury, Wichenford and Wolverley.
Infill work to enable extra cabinets in Bewdley, Kidderminster, Pershore and StourportDetail of next wave of Worcestershire roll-out
Timescale wise it is expected that services will go live in the above areas between October and December 2014.
Knightwick is interesting because it is unclear as to where the exchange is located, some sources suggest almost five miles away, while others place it in Knightwick (possibly disguised as a village hall - puzzle solved 9:30am it is down side road opposite the village hall). From checking which postcodes the exchange serves a building in Knightwick looks the most likely and explains why from the roughly 800 premises the exchange services around 200 are exchange only based lines in Knightwick, with cabinets serving Whitbourne and Broadwas.
While you could surmise that exchange only lines are a major problem on all the other exchanges, picking Eckington at random we find that while the number of premises served is similar the number of EO lines is a lot smaller.
Being cursed with an Exchange Only line as a general rule means that in the rush to hit coverage targets these lines are being left out until later in the projects, and as Worcestershire at the contract signing suggested some FTTP might be deployed, it is possible that some EO lines will not just see a fibre cabinet inserted, but might benefit from a full FTTP connection, which is used depending on which is the most economic to deliver. There is also the chance as the project is not aiming for 100% coverage at superfast speeds that some properties will be miss out completely.