New Nottinghamshire broadband locations announced as Openreach fibre build gathers pace

Thousands of homes and businesses already benefitting – news welcomed by the County Council

Openreach has today announced that more than 30,000 homes and businesses in and around Nottingham can access some of the fastest, most reliable broadband anywhere in the UK.

Engineering teams have been hard at work building the new network using the latest Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) technology - where fibre optic cables are laid all the way from the local telephone exchange to people’s front doors.

In November 2018, it was announced that Gedling was the first place to be included in Openreach’s local full fibre build.

Now, work is also underway in Sherwood, West Bridgford and Wollaton, as engineers install the cables and infrastructure required to connect up those areas.

The build is part of Openreach’s plans to make FTTP technology available to four million homes and businesses across the UK by the end of March 2021. The business wants to reach 15 million and ultimately the majority of the UK if the conditions are right to invest.

Full fibre provides more reliable, resilient and future-proof connectivity; fewer faults; more predictable, consistent speeds and capacity to easily meet the ever-growing data demands of future technology.

Kasam Hussain, Openreach’s Regional Partnership Director in the Midlands, said, “Recent research shows that connecting everyone in the region to ‘full fibre’ broadband would create a £3.5 billion boost to the local economy, by unlocking smarter ways of working, better public services and greater opportunities for the next-generation of home-grown businesses.

“We are making great progress here in the Nottingham and Nottinghamshire area as our full fibre build gathers pace. It’s just over 12 months since we first announced the city as one of our fibre build areas, and I’m sure people living here have already seen an increase in our engineer activity as they construct the network. We’re going as quickly as we can and look forward to going even further in the future.”

People interested in upgrading their broadband can see what’s available in their area by entering their postcode into Openreach’s online fibre checker. If your area is shown as ‘accepting orders’ you can order fibre broadband. You’ll need to contact a broadband provider offering a full fibre service on our network to do it.

Councillor Kay Cutts, Leader of Nottinghamshire County Council, welcomed the news “I understand the importance of maintaining and improving the county’s infrastructure; be that roads, transport or broadband. All three are essential ingredients for providing residents and businesses with improved access to markets to achieve economic growth and increase productivity.

“For the past eight years, Nottinghamshire has led the way in ensuring the availability of full and partial fibre-based broadband. We have outpaced not only our neighbours across the East Midlands, but authorities across the country as a whole – offering the second-best broadband speeds outside of London and better availability than Birmingham, Leeds, and Manchester.

“I am proud to support Openreach as they expand their Fibre First operation deeper across the County. Today, more than 10 percent of Nottinghamshire has full-fibre. It is a testament of our excellent public-private partnership – coupled with the Council’s ‘open for business’ collaborative approach – that more than 98 percent of our county now receives superfast services. This provides excellent foundations on which to build.”

Ten fantastic full fibre facts:

1. Connecting everyone in the East Midlands to ‘full fibre’ broadband by 2025 would create a £3.5 billion boost to the region’s economy.

2. Fibre optics are strands of glass around one tenth the thickness of a human hair. They transmit data using light signals.

3. A single strand of fibre can provide enough capacity to serve up to 32 individual properties with Gigabit speeds

4. Pure fibre optic broadband can run at speeds of 1 gigabit per second (1000Mbps) – that’s 18 times faster than today’s UK average broadband speed. You can download a two hour HD film in less time than it takes to make a cup of tea. And video gamers could download a 5 gigabyte virtual reality (VR) game in 1.7 minutes, instead of waiting half an hour.

5. Full fibre is more reliable than traditional copper connections. A full fibre broadband signal isn’t effected by external interference whereas copper can be impacted by outside electrical signals – including electric fences and even bad weather!

6. A fibre optic cable can send a signal over 120 miles without any real loss of quality. Traditional copper cables can lose signal at around one mile.

7. A family of four can all stream ultra HD or 4k quality video simultaneously, without waiting or buffering.

8. Full fibre is better for the environment – the amount of electricity used to power fibre is significantly less than needed for copper cables. Better connectivity also enables more people to work from home – which cuts down on commuting. Research suggests fibering up the whole of the UK could save 300 million commuting trips – reducing carbon emissions by 360,000 tonnes.

9. Full fibre can boost business productivity. It enables cheaper broadband powered phone services, and better access to cloud-based computing services. For example, full fibre connectivity combined with cloud computing means businesses can upload, store, access and download vast amounts of data in minutes instead of hours. Data is backed up and securely archived off-site so not relying on costly, ageing servers taking up expensive office space.

10. Full fibre broadband will be crucial in supporting plans to give NHS patients access to ‘virtual clinics’ where patients who don’t physically need to come hospital can get a video consultation with their doctor. It can also allow hospitals to share HD quality graphics of medical scans in seconds to improve diagnosis speeds. For example, medical staff can download a 2 gigabyte CT scan in 40 seconds, instead of 14 minutes.

More than 1,500 Openreach people live and work in the East Midlands and last year it was announced that 185 engineers are being recruited locally. Other Fibre City locations within the region include Derby and Northampton.

This short video explains what full fibre technology is and you can find out more about our Fibre First programme here.