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CityFibre partners with Gigaclear to speed up rural broadband rollout

Friday, July 1st 2016 by Phil Wilkinson-Jones

CityFibre has formed a strategic partnership with ultrafast broadband provider Gigaclear to speed up the rollout of fibre in rural areas.

The infrastructure provider has fibre networks in 37 UK towns and cities as well as more than 1,100km of long distance cabling acquired in a £90m deal with KCOM late last year.

This infrastructure will be used to “facilitate and accelerate” Gigaclear’s deployment of fibre to the premises broadband in rural areas.

The long distance network will provide a new backhaul option for Gigaclear projects while CityFibre’s ‘metro networks’ in towns and cities will be used to connect nearby villages.

Both companies say they have received “substantial new investment” in recent months, which they say demonstrates the market’s confidence in the need for alternative network infrastructures providers.

Greg Mesch, chief executive of CityFibre said: “We are delighted to formalise a partnership with Gigaclear which shares such a complementary agenda.

“We have long been aware of the huge levels of demand for better internet connectivity in rural areas surrounding our urban network projects.

“It is a national embarrassment that residents and businesses in rural areas, and indeed many of those in towns and cities, have been left in the digital dark ages.

“Pure fibre infrastructure is the 21st century utility and is an essential component to everyday life.”

Matthew Hare, Gigaclear’s CEO, said: “Bringing brilliant broadband to rural Britain has its challenges.

“This partnership with CityFibre gives Gigaclear access to more capacity, faster delivery and more flexible bandwidth across the country.

'Demand'

“It helps us build gigabit networks where other operators do not reach, to meet the demand for better broadband from homes and businesses.”

Earlier this week, Gigaclear announced that it will provide ultrafast broadband to 2,000 homes in the Blackdown Hills area of Devon and Somerset.

The news was welcomed by Tiverton and Honiton MP Neil Parish, who has been campaigning for better broadband in the area.

“I’ve been making the case for more commercial investment to increase choice and competition in the broadband sector,” he said.

“This is the sort of investment we’ve been looking for. This is really encouraging news for local residents and businesses.

“It complements Connecting Devon and Somerset’s programme, which is working across Devon and Somerset to provide faster broadband where the commercial sector isn’t investing.”

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