Residents raise £11,000 to bring superfast broadband to Oxfordshire village
Residents of Islip village in Oxfordshire have raised £11,000 to contribute to the cost of laying a new fibre network, after being excluded from BT’s £2.5 billion commercial fibre roll-out plans.
Now, Islip parish council has signed a deal with BT Openreach to connect the village with the network serving neighbouring Kidlington, with customers still being able to choose between several Internet Service Providers (ISPs).
BT Openreach rural broadband
Alison Mitchell, Chair of Islip Parish Council, said that local residents were fed up with the slow speeds available through the existing copper wire connections, and that the majority of the village would now have access to speeds of at least 30Mbps, and as high as 80Mbps once the work is completed by July 2013.
“High-speed broadband is of critical importance for many residents, and especially people who run businesses in, or work regularly from, the village, so we decided to take action,” she said. ““We spoke to BT about how we could boost their business case to bring fibre to the cabinet serving the village. They worked out what the extra cost would be, and we have raised the funds ourselves to make up the gap in the economics. The arrival of fibre broadband in the village will make a massive different to many of our lives.”
BT said that Islip had not been included in BT’s £2.5 billion commercial fibre roll-out plans because of the economics involved in delivering such connectivity to the small community, but invited other broadband notspots to contact it with similar proposals.
“We would encourage other communities to talk to us about their options; we want to provide fibre speeds to as many people as possible and in many cases local residents can make a real difference in bringing fibre to their area,” said BT’s managing director for Next Generation Access.
BT has so far won all of the funding available under the government’s Broadband Delivery (BDUK) scheme which aims to extend fibre into areas where it is not commercially viable.
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