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More Gigabit fibre in a £4.54m contract for Herefordshire and Gloucestershire
Friday 02 December 2016 09:43:09 by Andrew Ferguson

The Fastershire project which covers the roughly 350,000 premises of Herefordshire and Gloucestershire is likely to award a £4.54m contract to Gigaclear to deliver pure fibre to some 2,600 of the hardest to reach premises across the counties.

The contribution level from Gigaclear is unknown, but this may become clearer when an actual contract is signed rather than a recommendation, but the contract value of £4.54m represents £1,730 per premise which is believed to be close to the cap that value for money rules allow under the BDUK contracts.

"Access to a fast and reliable digital connection is becoming more and more important for families and businesses here in Gloucestershire and right across the UK.

We’re making a real difference to peoples’ lives, enabling the fibre network to reach some of the most rural areas where larger suppliers were not prepared to go. Faster broadband connection remain a priority to our economy, education and supporting our communities. The Fastershire project is pushing the boundaries of the technologies available with this next stage a key step in meeting the ambitions of the two counties.

That’s why phase two of our Fastershire project focuses on using new and emerging technology to deliver full fibre solutions to some of the hardest to reach premises across the county.

Cllr Mark Hawthorne

The two counties are not too backward with pure fibre coverage Herefordshire has 8.19% availability of FTTP, and Gloucestershire is running at 4.77% (1.64% via Openreach). The footprints this represents are shown below and at first glance you would expect the coverage to be much higher based on the number of postcodes served, but many of the postcodes only comprise a handful of premises.

Gigaclear Footprint

Click image to zoom in
Openreach GEA-FTTP Footprint

Click image to zoom in
Browse map of these and other FTTH operators

2,600 premises represents around 0.7% of the two counties, so while for individuals this will be a massive change in broadband abilities in the bigger picture it is just one small part of the puzzle.

Interestingly the Councillor David Harlow in the press release talks about Herefordshire having 15% coverage of FTTP, which is at odds with our own figure of 8.19%. If one uses the Ofcom 2015 data (coverage as of summer 2015) they claim a coverage figure of 13.6% of premises for faster than 300 Mbps, so we presume this is the data used. The difference with our own figure is some 5,600 premises and based on our analysis of the area we believe that the Ofcom data and the councillor may be including a good chunk of Openreach FTTP that is still in the build stages or just planned, we endeavour to only include premises where GEA-FTTP is available to order (some random checking does support this hypothesis too and an example is HR9 7RT which shows our data for the postcode, along with the Ofcom 2015 data, i.e. we tag premise as connected to a live cabinet but a long distance away and no FTTP and we suggest VDSL2 will be slow or non-existent, but Ofcom claim 92% of postcode can get 300 Mbps or faster and checking the sales checkers reveals no VDSL2 option and no FTTP.

Update 3pm We pushed Herefordshire to the top of the review stack and after a sweep of the county have revised our coverage figure for Openreach native FTTP to 9.13% (our coverage site has updated with the new figures and postcode information). There are a fair number of places where Ofcom claimed ultrafast availability but the build process is still ongoing, and in a good number it seems a VDSL2 cabinet has been put in place, and in others no sign of any work at all.

Comments

Posted by ValueforMoney 4 days ago
This is beginning to show how far the BDUK monies can go. I would be grateful to BT folk if you can explain why Gigaclear building a new network can outperform BT overlaying fibre on existing infrastructure? The amounts are small and the original budgets large so it is odd they could not be planned in the first place.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) 4 days ago
At £1,730 per premise, 1 million premises would be £1.7 billion, so not sure how its showing how much further the money can go.

The contract amount may or may not include a Gigaclear contribution.
Posted by ZenUser27 4 days ago
Where in Newport Wales does it show it available?

Be dammed if I can get it and I am dam near in the centre of Newport now.
Posted by fastman 4 days ago
VFM depends what the end game is for gigaclear -- last time I heard they were running at a loss so if the end game is the end game isgain a load of customer, ssll the network to another operator and refund the speculators/investers and roll off into the sunset that might answe the question
Posted by fastman 4 days ago
speculations / backers will want a ROI quickly and you only going to get that by building your base and selling it to another operator at a higher value -- you can only do that with some market share
Posted by ValueforMoney 4 days ago
@Fastman, the question is more about BT. What happens to Openreach network in these locations? How can overlaying a network not cost significantly less than building from scratch? For FTTP how much per customer is BT willing to invest?
Posted by fastman 4 days ago
building from scratch is some time chearer that overlaying the existing assumeing you even can -- also it depends on how the new is built and what spec it is built at

there seems to be an inherent lack of understanding of actual network engineering and what needs to be done
Posted by fastman 4 days ago
its seems always to be about the cost rather than actually what has to be done tom get it there

Posted by ValueforMoney 4 days ago
Fastman - expand on the difficulty and how BT difficulty with some infrastructure is greater than Gigaclear starting from scratch.
Posted by Somerset 4 days ago
@VFM - what was your final cost for those 12 properties in a hamlet?
Posted by ValueforMoney 4 days ago
Fastman BT have taken significant subsidies in Peterchurch and Pontrilas exhanges, so the AGN and spines are in both ends of the Golden Valley. So is this a resource issue?
Interesting to see if Gigaclear gets to use these subsidised resources?
Posted by fastman 4 days ago
my view is a general view o have no view on the specifics
Posted by fastman 4 days ago
VFM -- my point exactly if you have no view on how difficult it blowing fibre down existing ducts iwht already cables over a long distance might be- that duct might be a single way / blocked / collapsed ? driven over / contceted overbu over zealous farmer / developer -- lived in by protected animals or any of the above - noe of the above exist on a spreadsheet in a nice warm office
Posted by fastman 4 days ago
I think they use someone else's network network and -- actually they told some resident they owned the BT core network !!!! that was an interesting conversation - so you'd have to ask them
Posted by TheEulerID 4 days ago
@VFM

I invite you to go out and find a few OR planners or network engineers and listen to them and you might learn something about the practical difficulties involved as you are clearly have a fantasy version of what infrastructure is like rather than what is really on/in the grounds.

Also your fantasy maths whereby you think £1.7k per household passed shows that public finance can be used more wisely. In that basis, the total BDUK & matching finance would have only reached 1m properties.
Posted by Gadget 4 days ago
I think you also have to ask the question "how much revenue will Openreach see as a regulated wholesale product against an alt-net that potentially gets non-regulated and downstream service revenue as well"
Posted by ValueforMoney 4 days ago
Somerset - so4km and 16properties 4km, the quote range was from £16.8k to £24.8k. But do not get this distracted from this case.
Fastman - It looks like BT choosing to hand all the clawback rather than do the in-fill or provide FTTP on demand. Is that the case? BT have some big subsidies cabs here which will pay for themselves. Do explain, please.
Posted by ValueforMoney 4 days ago
@Gadget - it is Group taking the decision and the state is paying anyway.
The EulerID - so your saying this is too hard and BT is handing them back even though the money is available in the overall pot? There are 50 subsidised cabs in the Forrest of Dean exchanges so much of the hard work is done. It would be good to understand whether it is a resource issue?
Posted by wetherbypond 4 days ago
This is significant news. Perhaps a very pertinent question is why Fastershire did not choose BT for this? Despite having infrastructure, the coroprate muscle, and an existing relationship with Fastershire, BT did not get the contract. Maybe Fasterhire had a long bargepole and decided it was still not long enough.
Posted by Gadget 4 days ago
@VFM the State pays the gap against commercial business case. If another operator had the same catchment but was able to collect double the money there would be a reduced/removed gap, if that operator was prepared to take a loss/reduced earnings that would reduce the gap.
Posted by mdar5 4 days ago
I'm on a Gigaclear connection - on of their commercial projects.
Several reasons for it being cheaper than for BT to roll it out.
1. New builds are often cheaper than upgrading existing while the original is still working. This is why people knock down old houses and build new rather than trying to refurbish which is v costly.
Posted by mdar5 4 days ago
.....continued
2 GC only do the connection to the property boundary. The difficult and awkward bit across the garden and into the houses is at the cost to the householder.
3. Next the fibre is not ducted nor is is laid very deep so they can roll out the cable reel as they go down the road - makes it a fast job.
4. We the locals sorted out the problem areas and the awkward squad ourselves and "sorted" any wayleaves - all done free and in double quick time.
Posted by ValueforMoney 3 days ago
@Gadget 'commercial case' whatever that is and however it has been used has led directly to the legal separation of Openreach. And this is before your capital contribution is examined in any detail.
Posted by TheEulerID 3 days ago
@VFM

All of the BT/OR bids will have been made on the basis of wholesale revenue only. It doesn't matter if it's legally or just functionally separated. Downstream revenues to other parts of BT cannot be taken into account on OR investment decisions. It's inevitable given the way that Ofcom choose to regulate the business.
Gigaclear have a rather different commercial and revenue model (and, maybe, assumptions).
Posted by ZenUser27 3 days ago
@mdar5

Nah. I bought a large 3 bed for £92,000 spent £23k on refurbs and turned it into an HMO now commercially worth £293k. SO not always true.

I am turning it into 6 flats soon so could as HO to installed. (GC aren't interested)
Posted by AndrueC 3 days ago
Yup. If the total 'profit' from a fibre run is 10% then GC can calculate on that basis. OR can't assume they will get all of that. They will know that other ISPs will grab some of that 10%.

And yes, any engineer will tell you that it's often easier to start from scratch then try to revamp or upgrade old systems. The older the system the harder it is to upgrade.
Posted by AndrueC 3 days ago
Another issue for BT is that the 'older system' is actually extremely good at what it was supposed to do and pretty good at what it's doing. It's also a very large chunk of their corporate assets. Probably over 90% of their corporate value. So if they go to the markets and ask for money and the markets ask what the collateral is things get sticky.

Raising billions of pounds to replace the very thing that is acting as collateral for that money ain't easy.
Posted by AndrueC 3 days ago
If you lent money to BT would you be happy to accept that if the project or the company failed you'd be left with their current local loop?

And if you would be happy to own their current local loop why are you happy to see it replaced?

It's kind of mutually exclusive. Either the local loop is a valuable asset or else it's an aging load of old copper :-/
Posted by ValueforMoney 3 days ago
AndrueC - the cost recovery for the local loop is based on replacement costs so it is assumed elements are replaced.
WLAEL includes fibre/ATA in its definition.
BDUK is not an OR case, it is run by Group hence the growing capital deferrals.
I think this has nothing to do with the case, it likely to be resource decisions impacting the relationship.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) 3 days ago
Perhaps those who worked for the BDUK back in the early days should bear the responsibility and none of the contracts awarded until there was at least 2 bidders in the final stage and that to be an ongoing requirement for later phases of work.
Posted by ValueforMoney 3 days ago
AndrueC and the resourcing decisions are based on optimising cash flow from a state aid contract where costs and capital are gamed at the expense of the optimised network upgrade. When the former are challenged, you end up with big deferrals in the accounts but lacking resource to do the work.
Posted by gah789 3 days ago
This is classic market disruption for BT. BT earn the extra wholesale revenue plus ~40% of the extra retail revenue, but they may have lower costs of building the infrastructure. GC receive all of the wholesale revenue (not just the increment) plus almost all of the retail revenue, but they may have to spend more on building the network. It is quite plausible that GC can do this at a lower level of support than BT, though this might not be the cheapest option in some national calculation.
Posted by gah789 3 days ago
In addition, OR is patently overstretched in meeting demand for new infrastructure. It makes sense for BT to say that it is not worth taking on this type of contract - it appears that they did not bid at all - or only doing so at relatively high levels of support.

At some point, GC and similar altnets are going to run into similar constraints and will have to be more cautious about taking on new commitments.
Posted by Gadget 3 days ago
@VFM I would hope from your previous lives you would understand the case for commercial deployment, how the gap fund worked in principle to make a non-viable case viable, and which revenue streams could or could not be counted in the case.
Posted by ValueforMoney 3 days ago
Gadget enough to know if you had the resource then this work could be done given the work done so far. Note BT commitment to Welsh PAC earlier this month to meet this type of requirement using a FTTP on demand product which needs to be affordable.
The 'model' has had coach and horses driven through it. Lower costs, higher take-up. If the resource issue is real, then it can be addressed.
Posted by fastman 3 days ago
vfm - 'commercial case' whatever that is and however it has been used has led directly to the legal separation of Openreach -- smug face on that I can see !!! -- and what do that that is actually going to improve and who actually is going to invest in it -- - the old adage careful what you wish for as you just might get it - -then the true colours of the rest will be clear to see - !!!!!
Posted by ValueforMoney 3 days ago
Fastman - absolutely not, legal separation does nothing for rural, it is Ofcom's little Brexit. But BT gaming its costs and capital on this project did not help at this time. The capital contribution still needs to be resolved.
Gig fan of the engineering effort but hate the associated financial engineering.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) 3 days ago
If seeing the capital invested by contract winners is the prime importance that some see it as, why was publication of all invoices so the public can analyse everything not part of the BDUK contracts, ie. no public financial data no contract
Posted by ValueforMoney 3 days ago
Andrew, BT power mostly. The job needed doing and the Olympics were due. The NAO focus on the costs has helped the BDUK process. The same is now needed on the capital.
Converting these funds into improved coverage is also problematic as we see in this case. Procuring for 2,600 premises which were already contracted looks nuts, more so given the scale of clawback owed and capital which in my opinion is owed.
Posted by JNeuhoff 3 days ago
@Steve Jones: "Downstream revenues to other parts of BT cannot be taken into account on OR investment decisions."

I think your are mistaken here, aren't you? It is BT Group who owns the various business lines and divisions, such as Openreach, BT Sports, BT Wholesale, BT Consumer etc. And therefore BT Group can plough in money where it sees fit to it.

Of course, a full structural separation of Openreach might make things different, and would probably be a win-win situation for almost everybody (except for a few greedy shareholders).
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) 3 days ago
@vfm So what are these postcodes then? Clearly you have a list if you are able to say they already contracted and know Gigaclear are covering them.

As for NAO without lots more actual data, all that has generally given is small samples of data and averages. In a large construction project extrapolating from samples is often a way of creating overruns.
Posted by JNeuhoff 3 days ago
@andrew: I think you'll find several examples of overlapping deployments, probably even buried in your own data. Chelmsford/Maldon areas in Essex comes into my mind, where public funding was given first to FibreWifi to build a nextgen broadband coverage, to be followed by BDUK projects in some of the same areas.
Posted by ValueforMoney 3 days ago
Andrew -it is coloured on the Fastershire site and are all within the serving exchanges already included in the initial phase. Forrest of DEans exchanges are listed.

NAO - enough on costs was given and anymore needed. I am guessing it is now the attribution of other costs which BT claiming as capital which needed to be argued over. This is certainly what Ofcom finds most fraught. Categories of qualifying allowable costs is on the web. Even without this there is still a huge amount and growing to be invested - I saying 500k more FTTP is possible in rural.
Posted by fastman 3 days ago
Maldon -- told commercial programme yet given given money by ECC as buzzcomm for the denbigh peninsula which is actually whay they were successful for where they then decided to deploy in Maldon !!!! which was due to be commercial !!!!! !!!!

Posted by fastman 3 days ago
so they were given public money to spend in Place A and actually spent in Place B
Posted by fastman 3 days ago
actually that BDUk money many have been spent wthere buzzcome (now morephed into fibrwewifi) actually didn't deploy -- but sure ECC could answer that
Posted by fastman 3 days ago
Jneuoff

Fordham in Essex claimed as superfat by local wireless operator in 2011 / 2014 is not covered by superfast Essex even though would have been very cheap to do and would have covered around 1500 premises reasonably easily
Posted by TheEulerID 3 days ago
@JNeuhoff

No, I'm not mistaken. OR investments have to stand on their own. There's full retail competition and it would be profoundly wrong to include any retail revenue in what is network infrastructure which is available to all CPs on the same terms.

Where there is a potential influence are projects from BT Consumer over how many GEA-FTTC/FTTP products they are likely to make. I would suspect other CPs might provide projections of their own. Clearly the overall expected levels of sails affects the business case at the OR level.
Posted by TheEulerID 3 days ago
Sales not sails of course...
Posted by Michael_Chare 3 days ago
@mdar5
1) I see no reason why BT can not do a 'new install' fibre network if that is cheaper.
2) BT could also terminate their connection on a property boundary, people could then make their own arrangements for the final connection.
3) Where I live the Gigaclear cables under roads are in trunking. BT costs might well be lower where they can use existing telegraph poles.
4) BT presumably have most if not all the wayleaves they would need.
5) There maybe something in the pricing. Customers who order from Gigaclear will be paying £41+ per month. What sort of revenue would BT get?
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) 3 days ago
Ah so talking about intervention area, which was usually larger than the contracted target for delivery and thus the firm winning the contract had the choice of where to do so long as contract met.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) 3 days ago
On the fastershire map - perhaps I am dumb but which coloured zone lines up with the 2,600 premises of this contract. So then I can reverse calculate the exact postcodes.
Posted by JNeuhoff 3 days ago
@Steve Jones: "OR investments have to stand on their own" So you are saying that BT Group is not allowed to plough money into Openreach for building better broadband networks?
Posted by fastman 3 days ago
mciahe lcrae you have clealy no understangingg of the underttaking as they clearly detemines that Operneach respsonsibility nds up at the NTE in your house -- not at the end of your drive
Posted by fastman 3 days ago
Michael all the money of the 41 goes to gigaclear
Posted by Michael_Chare 3 days ago
@fastman. Indeed, but what would BT get?
Posted by fastman 3 days ago
depends by what you mean BT -- operator gets about 12 a month -- service provider get the rest
Posted by fastman 3 days ago
gigaclear can you what its likes with its 41
Posted by fastman 3 days ago
the Or element is the same regardless who the service provider is -- even if the service provider doesn't pass on all the line rental charges
Posted by fastman 3 days ago
Or gest the same amount of money whether is a copper or fibre connection although there might be some addition revenue if GEA services have to be prucgased by the CP to offer services - especially if that is a LLU provider as that will cost the LLU provider money to offer a Fibre service -- which is why llu providers are reluctant to offer fibre services (especially if they have bundled and offered broadband for Free" that just means they have paid for it but no charged you for it
Posted by fastman 3 days ago
part 2 -- so they wont want to pay money to give you fibre - unless you got a lo9t of pay tv and that worth more than giving you fibre
Posted by Michael_Chare 3 days ago
@fastmann. So I ssume that OR would likely to be willing to install more fibre if they could charge more than for copper, which I assume from what you are saying is not the case.
Posted by TheEulerID 3 days ago
@Michael_Chare

There are two issues. Would OR be allowed to charge more, but more importantly, would people be prepared to pay more than (say) what they pay for GEA-FTTC? That's the tricky question.
Posted by TheEulerID 3 days ago
@JNeuhoff

I'm sure that Ofcom would love BT Group to pour money into the network from profits it made in (say) BT Consumer or Global Services. However, the shareholders would make a dim view of it if money was invested into an uneconomic business case. It would amount to BT Consumer subsidising OR and they will, quite rightly, say why? Put the money into a project which will get a return or give it to us as dividends as we can invest it better on our own behalf.

Posted by TheEulerID 3 days ago
Note that the opposite is not true. Competition authorities would take a dim view of a business with SMP (OR) subsidising downstream activities like BT Consumer.
Posted by Michael_Chare 3 days ago
@TheEulerID. I think it would be sensible for Ofcom to devise a pricing scheme whereby people in rural areas who want broadband pay a little more. That would give those residents a choice, stick with possibly a sub 2Mbps service at the moment or pay a bit more than regular FTTC but get a faster service that is not based on problematic DSL technology. A decent broadband service is becoming more important. Some would certainly be prepared to pay.
Posted by TheEulerID 3 days ago
@Michael_Chare

Ofcom seem dead set against regional pricing regimes for basic services. The tradition in this country is that infrastructure service provision is the same price everywhere, whether it's phone lines, post, electricity or gas by cross-subsidy. That's all well and good when there's a national monopoly, but problematical when there's competition in half the country.

Posted by WWWombat 3 days ago
@Euler
The "single-price anywhere" tradition wasn't always the case. Even when phones were provided by a nationwide monopoly through the GPO. Though it caused questions in the house...

Nowadays, the "single price" scheme exists, if you ignore the fallback to ECCs.

If FTTPoD were available properly (I hope it makes a comeback as part of NGA2), then those willing to pay more for decent broadband would have an option.

I guess @fastman will point out that BT's community scheme also gives an option to those willing to pay for it.
Posted by TheEulerID 2 days ago
@WWW

Do you mean rental or calls? Calls used to be heavily localised (actually, for good reasons in that trunklines were expensive and of limited capacity). These days that is irrelevant. What it meant of course was that if you lived in (say) London you had millions of local numbers at local rate. If you were out in the sticks, you had far fewer numbers in your local call area.

I don't FTTPoD in anything like its current form being viable but all for rich households. The excess construction costs are too high. However, something creative about community pooling ought to be possible.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) 2 days ago
Still waiting for someone to highlight which coloured map shows the 2600 premises on the Fastershire site.
Posted by ValueforMoney 1 day ago
Like TheEurlerID - Part of converting FoD in rural to business as usual in rural is a larger connection charge for splicing and the drop wire. £250-£300 is an estimate. Adding a customer contribution to the existing effort mix ought to be possible.
Andrew - Ask Fastershire for the postcodes.
Posted by ValueforMoney 1 day ago
The equivalence of copper and fibre in Ofcom's WFAEL consultation is odd when Ofcom in the DCR wants more fibre access investment.
Changes in this incentive would might be better than Legal Separation.
Posted by WWWombat 1 day ago
@Euler
Line Rental.

1926 rental rates were £5 for the first 1.5 miles, then £1 per furlong.

For example, £5 for 1 mile; £33 for 5 miles.

Today those would be £274 and £1,808. Per Annum!

The former is relatively similar to today's line rental. The latter ought to make you pleased that ECC's are a one-off charge today.

http://forums.thinkbroadband.com/general/f/4515813-line-rental-in-parliament-1920s-style.html
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) 1 day ago
No @ValueForMoney you they were shown on the fastershire website, so I just want someone to point me to the page and which coloured zone and I doubt that postcodes will be released by project until the contract has been signed.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) 1 day ago
Reason for asking is that someone has said that these postcodes are part of a failed previous contract, so interesting in seeing how things line up and am sure council would love to know which premises they are spending twice on to get to a superfast type speed
Posted by ValueforMoney 1 day ago
I said the areas coloured were part of the exchanges covered in initial phase. so you get this statement -Covers areas of Cinderford, Coleford, Drybrook, Longhope, Lydbrook, St.Briavels and Whitecroft not upgraded to faster broadband in Phase 1
Posted by ValueforMoney 1 day ago
You can see post codes for CDS and in Northern Ireland where previous phases including commercial phases was supposed to cover an area. Thttps://www.economy-ni.gov.uk/consultations/northern-ireland-superfast-rollout-programme-public-clarification-intervention-area
Technically folk are going from an entire area to now an individual post code as a means of highlighting what was not achieved using a cabinet.
Posted by ValueforMoney 1 day ago
Andrew - light grey area 2, the strip is the Golden Valley and then there is the Forrest of Dean.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) 1 day ago
Okay so you were making a sweeping statement rather than one of the coloured areas being dedicated to this 2,600 contract.

Perhaps you believe if one cabinet on an exchange gets VDSL2 that the contract means ALL premises on that exchange will get broadband at superfast speeds - which is false. Detail from BDUK indicates that only premises counted as superfast after allowances for VDSL2 performance get gap funding.
Posted by JNeuhoff 1 day ago
@Steve Jones: "Put the money into a project which will get a return or give it to us as dividends as we can invest it better on our own behalf."

I think it's about time for you to sell your BT shares. What you are saying is like sawing off the branch you're sitting on.

BT needs serious network investment to survive, Ofcom knows it, users know it, only BT shareholders don't seem to understand it!

Posted by ValueforMoney 1 day ago
Andrew, the coloured areas have 2,600 premises within, so what is sweeping?

You need to appreciate the statements on future proofing and the capacity to extend that infrastructure using FoD. BT Wales have made this clearer to PAC in Wales on Nov 14th -transcript on recommendation 2 might help. This is in contrast to here.
The notion of demand and reasonable demand will need agreement. BT says cabinets are interim anyway, if a mixed economy is understood.
Posted by ValueforMoney 1 day ago
What is the actual number associated with 9.13% FTTP. That is a lot of good work making this decision by Fastershire worth looking at. 9.13% is more than anywhere else apart from Cornwall.
Posted by ValueforMoney 1 day ago
@JNeuhoff we are not even discussing BT funds, this is getting BT to show up to spend more public money upgrading BT's own network. BT Group have basically told Government we will take your money and give you what we want and tell you as little as possible. This is unfair on everyone working day to day, but the opportunity to plan resource was there from 2012.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) 1 day ago
Yes the coloured areas have the 2,600 premises within them, what you have done is no more use than saying the 2,600 are somewhere in Herefordshire, though with less knowledge could have gained the idea you had knowledge of the actual locations when that is not the case it appears.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) 1 day ago
9.13% is 7,300 premises

Kingston upon Hull has a higher proportion than Cornwall, so all depends on what you really mean, i.e. gap funded or commercial
Posted by fastman 1 day ago
VFM again no understand of network engineering and what it actually costs do build something your comment of part of converting FoD in rural to business as usual in rural is a larger connection charge for splicing and the drop wire. £250-£300 is an estimate -- its definitely that -- a completely incorrect / away off as FOD does not use any of the bandwith to get to a cab -- if builds a separate network for the person who asks the CP back from the Ag node --
Posted by fastman 1 day ago
2012 VFM was that when you had your other role then !!!!
Posted by ValueforMoney 1 day ago
Andrew, a little more than that, you can put the coloured areas on a map, count the cabinets in all the exchanges/cabinets/premise count overlayed on those area. A bit more and we can get an better estimate of the premises if there was a need. But this does not answer why with BT with so much subsidised infrastructure in place are planning to hand back so much money rather than complete the job Fastershire want?
Posted by fastman 1 day ago
But this does not answer why with BT with so much subsidised infrastructure in place are planning to hand back so much money rather than complete the job Fastershire want? - if the ask was X which Y money and X was delivered with Y money not sure what your point is and its the LA that has chosen to break up some of those areas into separate lots
Posted by AndyCZ 1 day ago
VFM doesn't understand fibre network typology, that's quite clear.

"connection charge for splicing and the drop wire. £250-£300 is an estimate."

From my own FTTP install it took two engineers a day to do stage 1 (with external contractors involved half a day to unblock a blocked duct, which apparently is required in 25% of installs) and then one engineer another full day to do stage 2. I would be interested to know if the £250-300 has been plucked out of thin air or if there is actually any substance behind it?
Posted by TheEulerID 1 day ago
@fastman

It's up to the local BDUK project whether they want to use claw back or underspend money to extend coverage beyond the original BDUK contract targets. It is not within OR's remit to unilaterally spend any money in the reinvestment fund, although I rather suspect that OR would like to do so subject to the availability of resources to do the work of course.
Posted by ZenUser27 1 day ago
Still waiting to see where all this super fast fiber is in Newport Wales, I am right in the middle of one of the dots and yet it's not available

Is this map just made up? As 91 replies and not a single line to back this data up!
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) 1 day ago
Our map is not made up, a lot of time is and has been spent on the data over the last four years, if you don't want to share the postcode via email, then at least say which actual exchange the FTTP dot is incorrectly placed on.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) 1 day ago
Ok so it seems you have no actual idea of the locations, which was originally inferred, and yes looking at the slowest postcodes should give a better chance of second guessing the new Gigaclear ones.

As to why BT is giving back money, if they have reached contract targets they need to ask to go further, hence phase II/III etc and the clawback clauses.

Broadband a rare .gov project underspending but that's seen as a disaster.
Posted by ValueforMoney 1 day ago
Not a disaster at all quite the opposite, but it highlights how much is possible and this potential should not be restrained by commercial practices which deny our economy what is a fantastic resource.
Posted by TheEulerID 1 day ago
@VFM

To repeat again, it is not BT/OR that decide on the use to which the reinvestment funds made. It is the local BDUK projects that do that. It's not a commercial practice decision.
Posted by TheEulerID 1 day ago
@VFM

Here is a link to the proof that it's a BDUK decision.

"However it also includes a mechanism whereby excess subsidy identified during the life of the contract can (with the agreement of the local body concerned) be reinvested in order to extend the supplier network further into the eligible intervention area."


https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/378713/State_aid_-_Guidance_-_Clawback.pdf
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) 1 day ago
@ValueForMoney You do know that more is always possible, but if the same sort of gap funding had been used in 2012, either a lot more public money would have been allocated or less premises targeted.

£1,730 spent on a premise that might not even order FTTP is a bigger gamble than the £200-400 of the first rounds.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) 1 day ago
On the Newport issue, there was one cabinet which was slated for FTTP and a chunk of it was done (the businesses oddly), but seems Openreach has now stopped. System for lookup will update this afternoon, map on Tuesday morning.
Posted by WWWombat 1 day ago
@VFM
"why with BT with so much subsidised infrastructure in place are planning to hand back so much money rather than complete the job Fastershire want"

First note @euler's BDUK specification: it needs agreement of both BT and LA before going further with unspent money.

Why might an LA withold this money? If they get a better offer, perhaps?

Why wouldn't BT chase this money further? If they believed it was a lost cause, why expend the man-hours chasing? If the decision is out of their hands.
...
Posted by WWWombat 1 day ago
Gigaclear seems reasonably intent on spending a lot more of their own money per property (before subsidy) to cover it - of the order of £1,000 vs the £200 that BT seem to be willing to allow.

Such a big £ difference means Gigaclear will always win the value-for-money tests wherever they enter ... provided they enter few enough that their resources can handle it, and they carefully pick.

In the end, it wouldn't matter how much infrastructure BT have used in phase 1. If Gigaclear are willing to spend a lot in order to win the contract.
...
Posted by WWWombat 1 day ago
Seems common sense to me. Not sure why it needs such a song and dance.
Posted by ValueforMoney about 21 hours ago
Common sense in a 2016 sort of way. 2,600 premises in previous phase with money available and with FoD clauses to fulfil.
We will see where it lands.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) about 18 hours ago
As if by magic the number of premises under 2 Mbps in Herefordshire is 3,000

https://labs.thinkbroadband.com/local/broadband-map#10/52.0077/-2.5880/usc/ shows the sub 2 Mbps postcodes.

Roughly another 2,000 in Gloucestershire.
Posted by AndyCZ about 17 hours ago
VFM - What FOD clauses?
Posted by ValueforMoney about 17 hours ago
@AndyCZ - BT selected on ability to extend infrastructure, and there are clauses on fibre extensions for communities. FoD in its original affordable form was introduced so these criteria could be passed. See BT Wales recent commitment to Welsh as referenced above.
Posted by ValueforMoney about 16 hours ago
Andrew- I will find a way to get those actual postcodes if they exist. If you take the 7 exchanges in the Forrest of Dean and the 2 in the Golden Valley, you find c3,000 not connected to the 57 cabinets installed. - Data is approximate only.
Posted by WWWombat about 2 hours ago
@vfm
"we will see where it lands"

Indeed. But if history repeats itself, then what you see, and what everyone else sees, will be two different things.

"common sense in a 2016 way"
Welcome to the world of commercial reality. Who would predict that GC would spend so much to acquire subscribers? A lucky LA must count its blessings when GC bid.

Posted by WWWombat about 2 hours ago
@vfm
"2,600 premises in previous phase with money available and with FoD clauses to fulfil."

"in previous phase"?
The premises might have been in the IA of the previous phase, but not in the plan to actually upgrade.

"money available"?
There wasn't enough money in the previous phase. And, it appears, GC will tender a better bid and take the money. Both these mean there is no "money available".

"FoD clauses"?
Aren't we talking Herefordshire here? Not Wales.

One (unreadable) sentence. Three falsehoods. Or three misapprehensions.
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