Digital & IT

Full speed ahead: Openreach announces 65,000 more premises are to get Full Fibre broadband

By Staff Reporter [email protected]

Published: June 24, 2021 | Updated: 25th June 2021

A £26m investment by Openreach in six exchanges in Bournemouth and Poole will see 65,000 more homes and businesses gaining access to its latest ultrafast, ultra-reliable Full Fibre broadband.

The UK’s largest broadband network provider has announced the multi-million pound upgrade at exchanges in Boscombe, Bournemouth, Canford Cliffs, Southbourne, Westbourne and Winton.

In total around 280,000 more South West homes and businesses are set to benefit from the broadband boost, costing in the region of £112m and involving 28 locations.

Work will take place between now and 2026.

More details of the full list of locations and timescales are published on Openreach’s website.

The news comes hot on the heels of last month’s announcement – reported on Dorset Biz News – that 440,000 premises in 181 mainly rural and harder to serve areas across the South West, including 45,000 in Dorset – were to be part of an upgrade.

Both announcements build on Openreach’s existing work in the region, where more than 480,000 homes and businesses can already order ultrafast, ultra-reliable Full Fibre broadband.

Following a competitive tender process, a number of partners including Telent and Kier, were chosen by Openreach to support the upgrades.

They’ll play a crucial role in building the new network to thousands of premises in these locations.

Connie Dixon, Openreach’s Regional Director for the South West, pictured left, said: “Nobody in the UK is building Full Fibre faster, further or at a higher quality than Openreach.

“We’re reaching more communities than ever and our team of highly skilled engineers, alongside our build partners, are working hard to deliver some of the fastest and most reliable broadband available anywhere in the world.

“Just last month we announced 181 rural and hard to reach locations across the South West were to benefit, so it’s great that we’re able to reveal another huge broadband boost for the region with these additional 28 locations.”

The company’s updated build plan will be fundamental to the government achieving its target of delivering ‘gigabit capable’ broadband to 85 per cent of UK by 2025.

It follows an extended investment commitment by its parent, BT Group, which means Openreach will now build Full Fibre technology to a total of 25m premises, including more than 6m in the hardest-to-serve parts of the country, by the end of 2026.

More than 3,400 Openreach staff live and work in the South West.

Recent research by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr) highlighted the economic benefits of connecting everyone in the South West to Full Fibre.

It’s estimated it would create a £4.3bn boost to the local economy.

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