Broadband Update - November 2020

The first FTTP (fibre to the property) Openreach project in the village is now up and running. About 25 properties on the top of Doctor’s Hill can access almost infinite fibre broadband speeds! Infrastructure has been built by Openreach and a broadband service can be taken from any company that provides FTTP locally. A similar FTTP scheme for lower Doctor’s Hill/neighbouring area of Newtown Road (L4 only) and a small one at Gambledown are now being built. No completion dates yet given. These are all Community Fibre Partnerships, contracted through Openreach by groups of local residents were around £1,000-£2,000 per property and costs fully covered by the government ‘Rural Gigabit’ voucher scheme.

Excited by success on the above projects we are supporting more small manageable projects around the village. However the quotes and suggested schemes coming back from Openreach have been much less favourable with too many properties included at too high a cost. A ray of hope is that Hampshire Broadband are now match funding so that properties can attract £3,000 each towards infrastructure costs of a CFP if the householder agrees and subsequently signs up for FTTP.

Coordinators are still working on the following projects:

Mill Lane, WW5, David - infrastructure for FTTP may have installed when WW15 FTTC was built by The Hatchet. However, David is struggling to get any sense out of Openreach. No progress CFP and unable to find out if the poles do already have FTTP infrastructure and thus can be connected……

Newtown Square, L4, Kevin –working with a small team on a large project covering Newtown Square, Carters Clay, Newtown Road towards Awbridge and Dunwood Manor. There is enough interest to cover the costs of the scheme with vouchers/match funding but currently waiting for Openreach to sort out anomalies before issuing a final quote. Kevin will contact you directly when he has some more news.

Newtown Road/The Frenches/Branches Lane, WW3 – Elenor. West Wellow 3 exchange users achieve the worst speeds. Mark@A27, Emad@The Frenches & Jon@Branches Lane have all requested CFP quotes but not been able to progress them. Elenor is bravely trying again. We will send out an email to residents if we are able to move forwards with a scheme.

Newtown Road/The Prophets, L4 c/o Ursula - CFP quote for 17 properties which may now be feasible using match funding. Waiting for Openreach’s final quote and then will need some residents to volunteer to support the local paperwork for contract signing processes etc.

Meanwhile I note that several residents have successfully switched to using mobile 4G hub technology and this can give good speeds @20Mbps, a vast improvement for those only getting 1Mbps via Openreach infrastructure.

Any queries then please email me on broadband@sherfieldenglish.org.uk

Best wishes, Ursula

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