Update: November 28th ….

Since the Engineer fixed a loose connection on the pole, we have been receiving an acceptable and relatively steady 6mbps download for over a week. So far so good.

I also eventually received a response from Fastershire this morning:

“Thank you for registering for the Better Broadband Scheme.
The data we have been provided with indicates that your line currently has a capacity above 2Mbps.
The criteria of eligibility for this scheme is that your line must be incapable of achieving a 2Mbps download. Unfortunately due to the current capacity on your line we are unable to offer subsidy for a broadband solution. Fastershire can only base the decision on information that is submitted by BT as part of the contract. “

So, no help in getting an alternative supplier, but they went on to explain what new scheduling is happening:-

“The project has recently revised its broadband strategy to ensure that by the end of 2018 everyone in Herefordshire and Gloucestershire will be able to access the broadband services they need. The project will do this through a series of new procurements …. [see website]. Draycott is defined as area 3D.

The website says:

Area 3(A-E) & 4: The rest of the Gloucestershire and the rest of Herefordshire

Area 3 has been subdivided into five smaller areas and the procurement process to select a supplier to deliver area 3 and 4 launched on Monday 19 September.

The deadline for this is Friday 25 November and it is anticipated that we will sign a contract for these areas in January 2017.

So, in summary it says that they have just done another ‘procurement process’ with a deadline of last Friday, and that in January next year, they will sign the contract. Then , supposedly someone will do something (undefined) over a period of time (undefined) to enable us to access the broadband service we need (undefined), and by the end of 2018.

I’m hoping that will be a minimum of 10mbps download, as explained elsewhere on their website and which was revealed a year ago now, that ‘the Government would work to introduce as a national minimum broadband speed’ of 10Mbps (Megabits per second) via an update to Ofcom’s Universal Service Obligation, which unlike then existing commitments would be legally-binding. BT has also said that they’d be able to support this.

One should be aware that the average speed for the country is 28mbps, and that the more recent announcement by Mr. Hammond for £1.4billion spend on improving broadband is mainly going to improve even further the urban speeds and to explore ultra high speeds:

Autumn Statement 2016: Digital communications

The government will invest over £1 billion by 2020-21, including £740 million through the NPIF (National Productivity Investment Fund), targeted at supporting the market to roll out full-fibre connections and future 5G communications. This will bring faster and more reliable broadband for homes and businesses across the UK, boost the next generation of mobile connectivity and keep the UK in the forefront of the development of the Internet of Things. This will be delivered through:

  • £400 million for a new Digital Infrastructure Investment Fund, at least matched by private finance, to invest in new fibre networks over the next 4 years, helping to boost market ambitions to deploy full-fibre access to millions more premises by 2020
  • a new 100% business rates relief for new full-fibre infrastructure for a 5 year period from 1 April 2017; this is designed to support roll out to more homes and businesses 
  • providing funding to local areas to support investment in a much bigger fibre ‘spine’ across the UK, prioritising full-fibre connections for businesses and bringing together public sector demand. The government will work in partnership with local areas to deliver this, and a call for evidence on delivery approaches will be published shortly after the Autumn Statement
  • providing funding for a coordinated programme of integrated fibre and 5G trials, to keep the UK at the forefront of the global 5G revolution; further detail will be set out at Budget 2017 as part of the government’s 5G Strategy

So, more words, more promises, more statistics.

Links: National Infrastructure Commission





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