Why the demand surveys for broadband are important.
As one of the conditions when applying for EU State Aid approval demand for the service to be delivered using public money has to be proven, and for the BDUK projects this is usually via a survey.
While we suspect many will see the surveys as just another box that has to be ticked on the projects in a conference call with Olivia Garfield CEO of Openreach last week, she revealed a crucial piece of information. The commercial led roll-out is driven by Openreach's own decision making process, but the joint projects with local authorities will see the councils telling Openreach where to go and deploy the service.
With the council in the driving seat it does mean there is scope for areas that have a need for better broadband to ensure they have campaigned well and made efficient use of any surveys to ensure they see an improvement beyond the USC that should arrive to all properties.
With the limited amount of funding available to councils, and goals that vary between 85% of a county getting a superfast service right up to 97% there is scope for a wide variation in deployment across the UK. This also means that villages may end up competing against each other, it also raises the issue that as much of the coverage and wording of the BDUK projects revolves around the concept of rural broadband, that people on the estates on the fringes of towns may be missed by the council planners.