Openreach pushes the boat out for broadband in Torbay with £18m infrastructure boost

Full speed ahead for ultrafast Full Fibre broadband in the Bay as local MP visits engineers building new broadband infrastructure in Paignton and four other exchanges in Torbay .

Kevin Foster MP visits Paignton

Torbay MP Kevin Foster met engineers working in Paignton to learn about the new infrastructure being built by Openreach at a cost of £18m across Torbay to deliver ultrafast, Full Fibre broadband to thousands of homes and businesses as part of Openreach’s £15 billion commercial investment in upgrading the UK’s broadband network.

 He was given a socially distanced tour of the work, which involves engineers replacing old, copper cables with fibre optic cables which run directly from the Openreach exchange into homes and businesses. These new cables will bring greater reliability and faster speeds and will future-proof the network in the local area for decades to come. The new network has already reached more than 20,000 homes and businesses across the Bay, which means that customers could already be upgrading to better broadband through a provider of their choice.

Connie Dixon, Openreach’s Regional Director for the South West, said: “Nobody in the UK is building Full Fibre faster, further or at a higher quality than Openreach. We’re reaching more communities – in rural, urban and coastal areas - than ever and our team of highly skilled engineers, alongside our build partners, are working hard to deliver some of the fastest and most reliable broadband available anywhere in the world.

“It is great that so many homes and businesses in the area can now access ultrafast, Full Fibre broadband and I’d encourage people to check what’s available at their address using the postcode checker on our website, www.openreach.com. Once you’ve put in your address and seen what’s available, the checker will then show you which of the dozens of providers which use our network are available and you can choose the provider to best suit your needs”

Kevin Foster MP visits Paignton

Kevin Foster said, “The past 16 months have shown us how essential good connectivity is for our working and home lives. Reliable broadband is more vital now than it has ever been. Full Fibre not only gives better speeds but is more resilient in bad weather, vital for a coastal community. It is good to see this work progressing and to hear of Openreach’s long term commitment to investment via their support to train the next generation of engineers”.

Openreach is already building Full Fibre faster, at lower cost and higher quality than anyone else in the UK, having made the technology available to more than 5 million homes and business so far. Torbay is ahead of the curve for ultrafast Full Fibre broadband coverage with a rate of 38% compared to the UK coverage of 24%. Openreach has been building in five exchanges across Kevin Foster’s constituency, including Paignton, St Marychurch, Torquay, Chelston and Shiphay Collaton. In addition, it’s building in the “harder-to-reach” locations of nearby Brixham, Churston, Copythorne, Furzeham and Higher Brixham.

Kevin Foster MP visits Paignton

The company plays an important role across the South West region with more than 3,400 of our people living and working here. Recent research by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr) highlighted the clear economic benefits of connecting everyone in the South West to Full Fibre. It estimated this would create a £4.3 billion boost to the local economy. Openreach has also invested heavily in training in recent years, with one of its dedicated training centres situated in nearby Exeter.

This short video explains what Full Fibre technology is, and you can find out more about our Fibre First programme, latest availability and local plans here.