29 more areas added to Openreach full fibre roll-out plans
The Fibre First programme ran by Openreach just got a bit bigger with the next batch of 29 localities, meaning the programme is going to be present in 103 locations by March 2021.
Aberdeen; Ayr; Aughton; Bradford; Billericay; Brentwood; Basingstoke; Brighton; Balham; Chorley Wood; Derby; Hatch End; Lichfield; Molesey; Northampton; Newbury; Norwich; Newcastle (N.I.); Ormskirk; Portrush, Portstewart, Rickmansworth; Royal Tunbridge Wells; Stanecastle; Swindon; Thames Ditton; Tonbridge; Watford; and WickfordNext set of areas where Fibre First work is set to start in next 18 months
The officially reported build rate is running at 22,000 premises but will have to continue to rise if the goal of 4 million premises by March 2021 is to be met. We should also point out that the four million premises total is not just from the 103 Fibre First areas announced to date, there is the various gap funding schemes, new build premises and some exchanges where FTTP has been rolled out but for some reason not under the Fibre First umbrella.
Full-fibre broadband provides a reliable, future-proof, consistent and dependable service that will be a platform for economic growth and prosperity throughout the UK for decades to come.
We’re now building at a massive scale. Every 28 seconds we pass a home or business with our new future-proofed full fibre network. This has given us ever greater confidence in the level and accuracy of whatever we announce – which is why we’ve now laid out our build plans right up to the target delivery date of four million premises by March 2021.
We also want to ensure we give our stakeholders – like council leaders, planners and MPs – the best view of where and when we intend to build so we can work together to build as rapidly as possible and help encourage people to take up the technology when it arrives.Clive Selley, Chief Executive of Openreach
The exact exchanges will appear on the maps and PDF file at the Openreach Fibre First micro-site in due course. One of the changes for this latest batch is that rather than covering a 12 month period, the forward looking has been extended to 18 months.
The current declared FTTP footprint from Openreach is 1.8 million premises which is a big jump from the figure mentioned at a WLR switch off event two weeks ago of 1.68 million premises, but there may be some rounding involved and we have just passed the end of Q3 there may have been a rush of work to meet internal and external deadlines. The pace needed to hit 4 million premises in the time left is 30,000 premises every week without fail.
When we do our next round-up of what we have found in terms of Openreach FTTP on 12th October we will also add the levels of Openreach FTTP coverage on Fibre First exchanges in addition to the usual overall figure. Our work to track down what broadband options is available to new builds is ongoing but one observation we can share is that some relatively new estates (e.g. some built in 2015/2016/2017) now appear to be getting Openreach FTTP delivered to them and public feedback suggests this is not under the Community Fibre scheme and probably not BDUK related either.