Broadband boost for Leicestershire as Openreach improve speed for hundreds of homes


New technology playing a key role in transforming areas previously experiencing slow speeds

Hundreds of homes and businesses across Leicestershire are set to get access to broadband speeds up to 30 times faster than the UK average*, thanks to Openreach, Britain’s digital network business.

The homes, in areas such as Ashby-de-la-Zouch, Castle Donington, Kegworth and Sileby are in line to be some of the first in the UK to benefit from a new way of installing ‘full fibre’ broadband, by using the infrastructure already in place for the existing copper broadband network.

Extensive testing and trials elsewhere in the UK have shown that building over the existing network means the technology can be deployed quickly and efficiently, sometimes within weeks. And by using existing infrastructure, such as underground cable ducts, it avoids the need to dig up footpaths and driveways.

The technology is capable of providing ultrafast broadband speeds of up to 1Gbps – fast enough to download a two hour HD movie in twenty five seconds or a forty five minute long HD TV programme in just five seconds.

Kim Mears, managing director of infrastructure delivery at Openreach, said: “We’re investing heavily in ultrafast broadband because we’re committed to giving Britain a first class network, capable of delivering the very latest communication services for households and businesses. By using new techniques, like we will be doing here in Leicestershire, we have already halved the cost of delivering ‘full fibre’ infrastructure.

“Our full fibre technology is being well received by communication providers and their customers. It’s not only making faster speeds available today, but it’s a long-term investment to make sure that our network is able to meet the demands than will inevitably be placed upon in in the years ahead.”

Openreach has passed more than 770,000 premises with high speed technologies, making it the largest ultrafast network in the UK. The network is open for all communications providers - to deliver broadband services that homes and businesses buy from them.

Richard Hall, Openreach’s regional network infrastructure delivery director for the Midlands, said: “I’m delighted to see customers in Leicestershire set to benefit from this initiative, some of whom have struggled with lower than average speeds in the past.

Openreach is building ‘full-fibre’ to a number of other developments across the UK using similar techniques. More than 20,000 homes and businesses are set to benefit, mostly by the end of December 2017.

This planned deployment in Leicestershire is part of Openreach’s aim to make ultrafast speeds available to 12 million premises by the end of 2020 – of which two million is using full fibre technology.

The rollout of ‘full- fibre’ builds on the existing deployment of superfast technology across the county where more than 96 per cent of homes and businesses already have access to high-speed broadband.

People can check if fibre is available at their home or business by entering their postcode or landline number into the checker on Openreach website.