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Central Bedfordshire delivers its first cabinet
Monday 30 June 2014 18:09:13 by Andrew Ferguson

Another cabinet has gone live with the gap funding from the BDUK fund and this time it is cabinet 11 on the Shefford exchange actually located in Stanford (existing cabinet on Google maps) and the local press was there to picture various people contained within a barrier.

The Stanford cabinet is the latest on a long list of commercially deployed cabinets on the Shefford exchange, with cabinets 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 12, 13, 14, 17, 18, 19, 20, 24 and 26 all live offering FTTC. Cabinet 2 was part of the commercial program but has been delayed until March 2015 according to the checker. Cabinets 15, 22 and 25 appear to include postcodes deemed as having superfast access already according to the Central Bedfordshire postcode checker. Cabinet 16 appears to have the short straw with just basic coverage currently that may be reviewed under the 2015 to 2017 project. Oddly the exchange has no cabinet 21 and no plans at present for the small number of Exchange Only lines.

Looking at the much wider picture with our usual estimate of coverage we get the following figures for the three authorities in the scope of the project. estimate of superfast coverage in Central Bedfordshire BDUK project area, based on the assumption every green street cabinet offers FTTC and/or cable broadband.
Authority % at 30 Mbps or faster % at 24 Mbps or faster % cable present % Exchange Only lines % needing extra USC help
Combined Unitary Authorities 86.4% 88.9% 38.8% 6.5% 3.8%
Bedford Unitary Authority 87.9% 90.4% 67.1% 8.3% 3.3%
Central Bedfordshire Unitary Authority 88.8% 91.1% 60.8% 6.7% 2.9%
Milton Keynes 83.1% 85.8% 0% 5.3% 5%
NOTE: USC figures refers to lines where cable is not available and both the ADSL2+ and VDSL2 speed we project is at 2 Mbps or slower.

Once more the calculations suggest that the project stands a good chance of meeting its 90% of premises having access to a superfast service when that definition is 24 Mbps or faster.

Milton Keynes of course does have various clusters of FTTP from Openreach, and we will in time factor these into further calculations along with which actual cabinets are providing a FTTC service so we can assess when projects declare completion whether the figures in the press releases stand up to scrutiny.


Posted by burble over 2 years ago
I guess this stems from my email to you.
Using the Central Beds postcode checker my house is listed as being phase 1 and therefore able to receive greater than 24Mb with the activation of this cabinet, and yet BT say I can expect 4 to 6 Mb, my conclusion is Central Beds figures are pure fantasy.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) over 2 years ago
Fantasy or someone sending out the emails does not understand the significance of the wording.

What postcode is it? I know that the BT checker was returning no FTTC for some lines even though connected to a live cabinet due to the distance. So Openreach do know about the line length issues for some.
Posted by burble over 2 years ago
Cabinet 11 was promoted as being able to supply 'superfast'(24Mb+)broadband to most of the properties in Stanford and Southill, in reality it would appear that most properties in Stanford will get 'superfast' but only some 28 properties in Southill can expect this, the rest will only get basic 2Mb+ and then only on paying a £10/month premium. Prior to the BDUK project there was a cabinet in Southill, this cabinet has been removed so there is now no chance that 'superfast' will ever be available to the majority of Southill properties.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) over 2 years ago
Well the bt checker is showing that reality and are calculations are too.

The other cabinet what number was it ?
Posted by burble over 2 years ago
Sorry I have no idea what the cabinet number was, I'm unsure as to when it was removed. It was there sometime after fibre was introduced at the Shefford exchange as I stopped and asked Openreach engineers who where working on it if they where doing preparation work prior to extension of fibre to area.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) over 2 years ago
May have been a sub cabinet and these never get a fibre twin.

As things stand our estimates of who can get service and those from BT checker are broadly in line e.g. SG18 9JA 7 Mbps but runs out by SG18 9LL.

Who made the promise originally? If on council then probably had no understanding of the speed versus range issues.
Posted by burble over 2 years ago
The plans for deployment of 'superfast' are on this map
This shows my house being in phase1 also entering my address in the checker on council website confirms I should have been in the phase1 'superfast' area, it was not until a few weeks ago when I realised where the fibre cabinet was positioned that alarms bells started ringing.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) over 2 years ago
That is really just a phase/planning map not a promise of specific speeds at specific locations.

Our map for the area looks like this

Green >= 30 Meg
Yellow 2 to 30 Meg
Red < 2
Black EO line

ADSL/ADSL2+ speeds are not shown, just what is possible if all cabs get FTTC.
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