What Cambridgeshire is going to do with its £4 million full fibre funding
The difference between the old BDUK funding and the new Local Full Fibre Network (LFFN) funding is massive and Connecting Cambridgeshire has set out what it will be doing with the £4 million of Government funding with everything delivered by March 2021.
- Fund a 40km stretch of fibre ducting from St Ives to Linton and making it available to commercial operators to stimulate rollout of Gigabit networks to nearby homes and businesses.
- Fibre upgrades to roughly 30 public buildings including schools, libraries, fire stations and GP surgeries
- Support businesses to access new gigabit fibre networks.
“I am delighted to hear today’s announcement by the Chancellor confirming Connecting Cambridgeshire successful bid for up to £4 million Government funding to help to bring full fibre connectivity - capable of gigabit speeds of over 1000Mbps – to Cambridgeshire and Peterborough.
Connecting Cambridgeshire has been very successful in expanding the coverage of superfast broadband to homes and businesses across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough ahead of target. While the programme continues to work towards achieving >99% superfast broadband coverage by 2020, we are already looking ahead to the ever increasing demand for digital and mobile connectivity to support economic growth and sustain our position as a leading digital county.
This project means we can increase the availability of gigabit services for homes and businesses across the county by using public sector assets innovatively and creating conditions that make it commercially viable for full fibre rollout.Councillor Steve Count, Leader of Cambridgeshire County Council
The cynics can say that in previous decades the funding would have been described as just upgrades to council infrastructure, but with the push to get beyond the old stalemate of BT and Virgin Media ways to encourage new names into the game such as CityFibre and VXFIBER are the flavour of the month. Expressing it another way the BDUK projects were the upgrades for the home and local 2 person business and the LFFN is about attracting new digital economy powerhouses like gaming studios and film editing facilities so that the economy can benefit from new jobs and after incentives such as business rate holidays end increased revenues for the local authority.
So for home owners who are on the likely route between St Ives and Linton do not expect Gigabit broadband to appear by March 2021 but if the stimulus does work we may see operators announcing further projects that will bring Gigabit broadband and its those further projects that are the exciting element.