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Swindon homes included in BT broadband trial after long-running campaign for fibre

Tuesday, February 23rd 2016 by Ellen Branagh

Hundreds of residents who have been struggling without fibre broadband in a new development are set to get speeds of up to 300Mbps as part of a new trial, BT has announced.

A new fibre to the premises (FTTP) trial will give ultrafast speeds to 500 homes in the Haydon Wick area of Swindon this spring.

Residents have been campaigning for fibre for months, with some claiming the lack of connectivity was down to an administrative error.

Openreach has now announced that its trial will build fibre connections direct from the local telephone exchange to around 500 premises in the area, allowing residents to order broadband services with speeds up to 300Mbps from their chosen provider.

It is hoped the first customers in Haydon Wick will be connected to FTTP by the end of March. Those who will be covered by the ultrafast network will get a flyer to their home this week.

Kim Mears, managing director of infrastructure delivery at Openreach, said: “We’re really excited about the prospect of building an all fibre, ultrafast broadband network to parts of Haydon Wick.

“The development has so far missed out on the benefits of fibre broadband, so I’m very happy to say that some of the locals will have access to some of the fastest speeds available across the whole of the UK from this spring.

“What’s more, we’ve committed to leaving the FTTP network in place once the trial has finished, so residents in the trial area can continue to enjoy ultrafast speeds for a long time yet.”

Openreach said it will be testing a number of new techniques and processes for rolling out FTTP, which could be used to deploy the technology more quickly and widely to other parts of the UK.

The new trial in Swindon is in addition to existing trials of ‘G.fast’ – which uses a combination of fibre optic cables and copper wires – and FTTP technologies in Huntingdon, Gosforth and Swansea, which are aiming to take ultrafast speeds to the majority of the UK by 2025.

The combination of Openreach’s commercial rollout and the Wiltshire Online programme – a partnership between BT, Wiltshire Council and the government’s Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) programme – means more than 220,000 homes and businesses in the county can access superfast fibre broadband.

Picture courtesy of Jonathan Billinger.

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