BDUK Connects 2.4 Million Homes And Businesses To Fibre

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BDUK estimates it costs £1 million to connect 6,837 properties, according to latest figures

Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK)-funded projects have directly connected 2.41 million homes and businesses to superfast broadband as of March 2015, according to the latest figures released by the Department of Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS).

This is an increase of more than 500,000 from the last set of data, which covered up to December 2014.

The initiative, which provides government assistance for the rollout of superfast broadband in areas not covered by commercial deployments, has so far given out £301.4 million to local authorities who must match any funding received.

BDUK connections

BT Cumbria fibre broadbandBT, which has won all of the government funding available, has also contributed to the rollout, while some projects have received additional sources of income, such as money from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).

Based on the latest figures, BDUK has connected 7,999 properties per £1 million spent, however DCMS estimates the amount spent is actually higher as work is carried out in advance of payment. It suggests the actual figure is £352.7m, meaning that 6,837 premises have been connected per £1m.

The previous set of data indicated that BDUK had handed out £252 million to local projects, which had directly connected 1.9 million homes and businesses to fibre at a cost of £1m per 7,572 premises.

BDUK hopes to connect 95 percent of the UK population to superfast broadband by the end of 2017 and is turning its attention to connecting the ‘final five percent’ using alternative technologies such as satellite.

The project has proved controversial, with some suggesting it has amounted to state aid for BT, which itself has been accused of overcharging the taxpayer.

However BDUK CEO Chris Townsend has said he is pleased with the progress made so far and claims the project is firmly on track to meet its coverage goals.

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