Thousands more East Sussex homes and businesses to get fibre broadband boost through multi-million pound extension project
At least 5,000 more homes and businesses in East Sussex will be able to access high-speed fibre broadband following the signing of a new £4million contract with BT.
Our first contract is achieving excellent results in bringing better, more reliable fibre broadband to many areas that would not otherwise benefit from upgraded services, but there are properties that for technical reasons remain hard-to-reach. Sometimes this is because properties are not always connected to the nearest street cabinet or indeed to any street cabinet; or – more usually – they are too far away from their nearest cabinet to benefit from a fibre upgrade (speeds degrade over very long copper length from the fibre cabinet back to the home/business). The new contract will help to overcome these issues in order to further extend the reach of fibre broadband across the county and push up speeds where these are not what we would like to see.
BT is currently working on the high-level planning and design of new works, which are technically complex. This is expected to be completed towards the autumn, following which an updated postcode checker and further information on areas planned to benefit will be published. Build works for Contract 2 provisionally begin towards late summer 2016, although time frames may change once planning is completed.
The new contract is made up of £2million further funding from Government’s Broadband Delivery UK, matched with £2million from East Sussex County Council and £0.2million from BT. An additional £2million is available to the project and we are asking BT to do further work to model solutions using this extra money to enable the project to extend yet further.
East Sussex will continue striving to find solutions for the remaining premises that are not currently benefitting from the commercial or public investments. This includes working with BT to look at emerging technologies over the course of planning and deployment.
For information on the rollout of the current project, please see our rollout table, which is updated regularly, in the news section of the website.