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Superfast Staffordshire is 'at Loggerheads' - as 500th fibre broadband cabinet goes 'live'

Press Release   •   Nov 03, 2016 10:40 GMT

Partners in the multi-million pound Superfast Staffordshire project today announced they were at Loggerheads – but in the best possible way!

Loggerheads is the name of the community where the project’s 500th fibre broadband cabinet has just gone live. It serves 70 properties on the Burntwood Estate. The cabinet is the eighth to become operational in the parish and brings the number of Loggerheads homes and businesses able to connect to faster fibre broadband to around 1,500.

Barton Gate and Harlaston are among some of the other communities to benefit recently from the roll-out as well as additional parts of Churchbridge, Fazeley and Woodseaves.

Engineering work began two and a half years ago on Superfast Staffordshire, which is led by Staffordshire County Council and BT and is part of the Government’s Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) programme. Since then the programme has enabled more than 90,000 households and businesses to connect to fast broadband speeds.

Karen Watkins, parish clerk for Loggerheads, welcomed the news. She said: “We recently surveyed parish residents and businesses when drawing up our neighbourhood plan and the overwhelming majority of responses highlighted faster broadband as an important requirement for people living and working in this rural community. I am, therefore, delighted that so many households and businesses will now be able to upgrade their service to high-speed fibre broadband.

“From a personal point of view, high-speed broadband will make life a lot easier for me when working from home and when my two sons are home and all four of us want to be online at the same time. I was very pleased to find out when I applied for an upgrade at home that, not only would we be able to get a package offering us unlimited broadband, it would also be cheaper than my previous service!”

Upgrading to fibre broadband does not happen automatically. It’s an ‘opt in’ service. Because the network is being installed by Openreach, BT’s local network business, it is ‘open’ so residents and businesses wanting to upgrade have a wide choice of fibre broadband service providers.

Councillor Mark Winnington, Staffordshire County Council’s economic growth leader, said: “The roll-out of the Superfast Staffordshire programme is continuing at pace with communities across the county reaping the benefits. The feedback to the parish council on the importance of being able to connect to faster broadband speeds demonstrates the value of this project to Staffordshire people.

“Together with commercial coverage, over 93 per cent of Staffordshire properties will now be able to connect to superfast fibre broadband, and 95 per cent by the end of 2017.”

Ian Binks, BT’s regional manager for Staffordshire and the West Midlands, said: “Superfast Staffordshire is a multi-million pound engineering programme which is progressing extremely well. When combined with BT’s commercial roll-out, around 465,000 premises across Staffordshire are now able to access faster fibre broadband.

“Every day we’re seeing how this technology is making a positive impact on local households and businesses. Whether it’s people working from home, families using the internet for education or leisure or a business seeking to be more competitive and efficient – everything you do online is faster and better with fibre broadband.”

People can follow the Superfast Staffordshire roll-out and find out more about how they could benefit from high speed fibre broadband via the website: www.superfaststaffordshire.co.uk

ENDS

Issued by Staffordshire County Council and BT.

For further information about this news release Tom Hobbins at the Staffordshire County Council press office on 01785 276832 or email: tom.hobbins@staffordshire.gov.uk

OrEmma Tennant at the BT Regional press office on 0800 085 0660 or email: emma.tennant@bt.com Twitter: @EmmaTennantBT

All BT news releases can be read at www.bt.com/newscentre

Photos of the roll-out of Superfast Staffordshire can be downloaded for free from: https://flic.kr/s/aHsk1eZqD3

About Superfast Staffordshire

Superfast Staffordshire is a partnership between Staffordshire County Council, BDUK and BT. It builds on the commercial roll-outs in the county.

The first phase of the Superfast Staffordshire roll-out programme represents an investment of more than £27 million (£7.44 million from Staffordshire County Council, £7.44m from the Government’s Broadband Delivery UK and £12.47m from BT.)

Staffordshire County Council will receive an extra £2.4m from BT following higher than expected take up of fibre broadband. This will be modelled in due course.

The new deal injects further funding into the County Council’s contract with BT, with a further £1.68m coming from the Department for Culture, Media and Sport’s Superfast Extension Programme (SEP) and £630,000 from BT.

For those premises not included in the fibre footprint, Superfast Staffordshire is aiming to improve broadband speeds using alternative technologies.

About Superfast Britain

Superfast Britain is a Government programme of investment in broadband and communication infrastructure across the UK. Run by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, this investment helps businesses to grow, creates jobs and will make Britain more competitive in the global race. The portfolio is comprised of three elements:

  1. £790m to extend superfast broadband to 95% of the UK by 2017;
  2. £150m to provide high speed broadband to businesses in 22 cities; and
  3. £150m to improve quality and coverage of mobile phone and basic data network services.

    Administered on behalf of Government by Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK), Superfast Britain is transforming Britain by promoting growth, enabling skills and learning, and improving quality of life.

    For further information: https://www.gov.uk/broadband-delivery-uk

    About BT

    BT’s purpose is to use the power of communications to make a better world. It is one of the world’s leading providers of communications services and solutions, serving customers in 180 countries. Its principal activities include the provision of networked IT services globally; local, national and international telecommunications services to its customers for use at home, at work and on the move; broadband, TV and internet products and services; and converged fixed-mobile products and services.BT consists of six customer-facing lines of business: Consumer, EE, Business and Public Sector, Global Services, Wholesale and Ventures, and Openreach.

    For the year ended 31 March 2016, BT Group’s reported revenue was £19,042m with reported profit before taxation of £3,029m.

    British Telecommunications plc (BT) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of BT Group plc and encompasses virtually all businesses and assets of the BT Group. BT Group plc is listed on stock exchanges in London and New York.

    For more information, visit www.btplc.com