Rural FTTP Network To Connect 6,500 Properties In Cotswolds


Gigaclear to build 1Gbps FTTP network as part of Fastershire BDUK project covering Gloucestershire and Herefordshire

Gigclear will connect 6,500 properties across the Cotswolds to a new 1Gbps fibre to the premise (FTTP) network by the end of 2017.

The network forms part of the second phase of the Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK)-funded ‘Fastershire’ project, which covers the counties of Gloucestershire and Herefordshire.

Gigaclear will connect the first homes and businesses in the Seven Springs area this October and will cover Coberley, Upper Coberley, Cowley, Stockwell, Elkstone and Colesbourne by the first quarter of next year.

Rural FTTP

Cotswolds 2BT won the contract for phase 1 of Fastershire, which has so far connected 64,500 homes to superfast broadband, with 701km of fibre laid, 72 exchanged upgraded and 316 cabinets activated.

“Some of the county’s most isolated and difficult to reach areas will benefit from Fastershire’s new rollout in the Cotswolds,” said Mark Hawthorne, Gloucestershire County Council. “We know that residents are increasingly eager to see details on when they may be upgraded so I’m delighted to now publish the full list of premises included in the rollout.”

Earlier this year, Gigaclear raised £30 million to continue its rollout of fibre in rural areas. The company already operates 23 FTTP networks and has another 31 under construction. It recently won a contract for Epping Forest.

“This will give homes and businesses in the area a world-leading internet connection with speeds up to 40 times faster for downloads, and up to 300 times faster for uploads than the UK average,” added Matthew Hare, chief executive of Gigaclear. “Working with local communities, landowners and the county council, we aim to minimise the impact on the local environment during the construction stage while we install this future proofed, new telecommunications network.”

In total, BDUK has connected more than three million premises to fibre that wouldn’t have been covered by commercial deployments of the technology.

Most of the UK’s fibre infrastructure is based on Fibre to the Cabinet (FTTC) technology, which uses copper for the final few metres of the connection. A number of operators, including CityFibre and Hyperoptic, offer FTTP connections, however these are mostly restricted to urban areas.

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