Even more South Gloucestershire communities than originally planned are set to get access to high speed broadband, the Great Western Broadband (GWB) partnership between South Gloucestershire Council, Wiltshire Council and BT can announce today (17th March).
As the first phase of the rollout completes this month – on time, under budget and with even more premises covered – more than 17,000 homes and businesses will have access to fibre broadband. This is 2,000 more than the original target of 15,000 premises when the project began two years ago.
South Gloucestershire communities which have benefitted from the GWB rollout so far include Aust, Badminton, Barrs Court, parts of Bradley Stoke town, Charfield, Downend, Lower Almondsbury, Lower Olveston, Marshfield, Pucklechurch, Rangeworthy, Rudgeway, Severn Beach, Thornbury town centre, Tockington, Tormarton, Warmley, Wick, Wickwar and Winterbourne. Horton and Hawkesbury Upton will also get access to fibre broadband by the end of this month.
Of the 17,000 premises, up to 14,000 will be able to access speeds of more than 24Mbps with the remaining 3,000 premises having access to improved broadband speeds up to 24Mbps.
When combined with BT’s commercial roll-out it means that more than 105,000 households and businesses in South Gloucestershire can now get fibre broadband.
Cllr John Goddard, Chair of South Gloucestershire Council’s Resources Sub Committee, said:
“The additional coverage of 2,000 households and firms across South Gloucestershire has meant that more communities have been able to benefit than we originally planned when the rollout of superfast broadband began two years ago. It’s a great achievement to have completed the first phase of this rollout on time to more premises within the original funding. We are already planning ahead towards the second phase of the rollout when even more communities will be able to benefit from having access to superfast speeds.”
In order to provide homes and businesses with access to high quality digital connectivity, engineers from BT’s local network business, Openreach, have laid more than 140 km of fibre cable – the equivalent of Chipping Sodbury to Winchester – and installed more than 85 roadside green cabinets.
Matt Lloyd, Programme Manager for BT, said: “Fibre broadband is essential to the rural communities and businesses of South Gloucestershire.
“The vast majority of homes and businesses can now access high-speed fibre broadband which will bring huge benefits to the local economy as it will encourage the expansion of private enterprise in South Gloucestershire which will in turn help create more jobs. It is particularly good news that we have been able to go well beyond the target set by the partnership at the start of the project. This has been made possible by a highly effective partnership, which has identified many efficiencies as the rollout progressed. This is one of the most important infrastructure projects of our age and I’m proud of the role BT’s playing.”
Households and businesses are not connected to fibre broadband automatically; you need to sign up with your chosen internet provider. To find out more, go to www.southglos.gov.uk/broadband
Source: South Gloucestershire Council