While it is very easy to criticise the levels of coverage in the less well served areas the County of Herefordshire is at least making progress and BT has announced that with cabinet 2 on the Fownhope exchange going live that fibre based broadband availability has reached over half the county.
Our own figures suggest that while the BT news release was correct at the end of July, the rate of growth in coverage is such that the area at the end of August 2015 had 52.7% of premises with the option of 30 Mbps or faster broadband and 61.9% able to access a FTTC based service (a further 0.55% had the option of native FTTP at speeds of 40 Mbps to 300 Mbps).
The goal by the end of 2016 still seems to be a figure of 90% fibre based coverage, which should mean around 82% availability at superfast speeds. The growth of just over ten percentage points in the first eight months of 2015, mean that 16 months to go the goal looks achievable so long as extra resources can be allocated to increase the roll-out speed.
|thinkbroadband calculation of Superfast, USC and Fibre
Broadband Coverage the two constituences that comprise Herefordshire
- figures as of 31st August 2015
|Area||% fibre based||% superfast
24 Mbps or faster
30 Mbps or faster
|% cable||% Openreach FTTP||% Under 2 Mbps USC||% Under 15 Mbps|
|County of Herefordshire||62.5%||54.3%||52.7%||0%||0.55%||1.6%||36.4%|
|Hereford and South Herefordshire||80%||69.9%||67.8%||0%||0.87%||2%||25.1%|
The constituency split shows a big north/south divide and hopefully many more cabinets like the one in Fownhope will go live improving the chance of getting a superfast service in the north of the county.