Another Oxfordshire village gives up waiting for County Council
Oxfordshire is rapidly turning into a major broadband hotspot, with numerous projects delivering different types of service. The village of Binfield Heath which sits midway between Caversham and Henley on Thames has raised some £60,000 to get fibre twins added to the two street cabinets that cover the area of some 120 households.
This self subsidy of the Openreach roll-out is not new, Islip did similar earlier this year and The Telegraph coverage indicates the money was raised with a mixture of pledges and a generous pledge from the Phillimore Estate that owns properties in the area. The overall cost BT is talking about is £100,000 for the two cabinets which can be found here and here.
Spending £60,000 to serve 120 homes (£500 for each) when in theory there is a BDUK project running for Oxfordshire seems close to madness, but with Oxfordshire still to sign its contract there is no firm timeline for improvements, and the real possibility that 120 properties in the south east corner of Oxfordshire might be overlooked. Oxfordshire also has a number of villages already offering Gigabit broadband via Gigaclear, and also is home to Cotswold Broadband who are looking to build a FTTP network in the Chipping Norton area.
The Binfield Heath area is around 3.5 miles from the exchange in Caversham and appears to get speeds of around 2 Mbps currently, so the jump to something like 30 Mbps to 80 Mbps will be a significant improvement, and following on from there once Fibre on Demand is available businesses in the area (or home owners willing to pay connection fee) will have the option of adding Fibre on Demand with its current maximum speed of 330 Mbps.