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Dorset's fibre broadband rollout making 'strong progress'

Tuesday, May 24th 2016 by Phil Wilkinson-Jones

The rollout of fibre-based broadband in Dorset is set to hit a number of significant milestones.

Superfast Dorset, a partnership between Dorset’s councils and BT, has laid 800,000 metres of fibre optic cable so far and will reach a million metres – enough to stretch from Land’s End to John O’ Groats – later this year.

Engineers have also installed nearly 500 fibre street cabinets around the county.

Langton Herring, Boscombe, Christchurch, Milborne St Andrew, Poole, Parkstone, Westbourne, Morcombelake, South Perrott, Chedington and Stalbridge are among the latest communities to be included in the rollout.

The village of Stour Provost (pictured), near Gillingam, has also benefited from the arrival of fibre.

Resident James Nalty said his download speed has gone from 1.9Mbps to 23Mbps after signing up to a fibre service – despite living a mile outside the village.

He said: “I was frustrated with the old service and upgraded as soon as it was available.

“Fibre broadband has actually worked out cheaper than my standard service and I can now get a much better quality picture on BT Sport, which is great as I like to watch the rugby.

“I now get a much better picture on internet and catch-up television and when I video call my daughter and granddaughters in London I get much better clarity.

“I would definitely recommend switching to fibre broadband. It has exceeded my expectations. I’m delighted and sure anyone else who gets it will be too.”

'Competitive edge'

Paul Coles, BT’s south west regional manager, said: “Superfast Dorset continues to make strong progress with the number of local households and businesses able to get faster, more reliable broadband growing every week.

“Together with our commercial programme, we have already reached more than 350,000 homes and businesses with our fibre network in Dorset – and we are going further.”

Colin Jamieson, Dorset County Council’s cabinet member for economy and growth, said: “Investing public money in fibre broadband helps sustain our rural communities and maintains Dorset’s competitive edge as a business destination.

“It also allows homeowners to do things that need a faster internet connection like providing access to skills and learning and other social connections.”

Picture courtesy of Trish Steel

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