Gigabit fibre - we are now getting connected!

GREAT NEWS: The Gigabit Fibre scheme has now started to connect hundreds of homes in Wanborough. There is ongoing work as in Phase 1 the build must be complete by end of May 2022. Phase 2 (part of Liddington and Badbury) will be completed by August. 

When you get the email that you can now order your Gigabit fibre service which companies can you use:

 

The link below is to the list of providers:

 

https://www.openreach.com/fibre-broadband/fttp-providers

 

 

Gigabit fibre update 11/4/22 for Wanborough:
 
 

 

We had our regular update earlier with the Openreach Project Team this evening:

 

Some answers below to some common questions:

 

If you’ve had the email saying you can connect, then that means the service is available. The final connection to your home via pole, duct etc will be done by the company you choose for your connection from one of the 26 available.

 

Once you have received that email one of the terms is that you should apply for a minimum 30gb service within 2 weeks (lead times for installations are 1-2 months at present). Reminders will be sent by Openreach about applying as it was a condition of pledging to take a service and that if not taken up, you will have to repay the voucher cost.

 

Companies will be able to offer a digital phone service if you want to keep your number etc. Best to talk them through what you want as it is an opportunity to make sense of telephone, broadband, t.v. and satellite/on demand tv services and try to save money.

 

CHISELDON UPDATE: In Chiseldon 798 premises are available for connection with a further 352 to go.

 

Hodson fibre is built, but the feed to Hodson is a couple of weeks away. Work in ongoing on Hodson Road. Butts Road, Marlborough Road and Badbury are awaiting poles which are on order. They will move onto completing Ladysmith Road and areas South of Chiseldon asap.

 

WANBOROUGH: In Wanborough 600 premises are available for connection. 330 to go (bear in mind this number includes Liddington). There are some blockages in Ham Road, but these are being addressed and the ‘Phase 1’ of Liddington will be completed by May as planned. Phase 2 (Medbourne Lane etc) will be completed latest by August but they are working to do faster.

 

Another update next month as the Phase 1 scheme draws to a close in terms of build.

 

 
 
 
Gigabit fibre update 26/3/22 for Wanborough:
 
I had a brief update on the Wanborough build this afternoon:
 

As of today there are 404 premises that have gone into our commissioning stage which as per previous conversations can take 2-3 weeks or could take 1-2 weeks depending on the commissioning teams workloads.

 

We are looking to get another 100 premises into commissioning by the end of next week. After that we should see a steady stream of premises being moved into commissioning on a weekly basis.

 
 
 
Gigabit fibre update 14/3/22:
 
We met with the build team managers from Openreach today and they are all hands to the deck to get as many premises commissioned as possible.
 
WANBOROUGH:
500 homes will be commissioned before the end of March/very early April. The first areas include parts of High Street, Kite Hill and roads off (so that includes Magdalen Road area and Beanlands area) and Rotten Row.
 
ICHISELDON:
298 premises starting with the following have fibre available and will receive emails from Openreach in the next two weeks telling those residents to apply to a service provider for a connection.
Castle View Road, Station Road into New Road, The Canney/Chiseldon Court, Canney Close, School Close, Windmill Place, Carisbrook Terrace.
In Chiseldon there will be another 500 premises commissioned by the end of the month.
 
We will remind you when you’re likely to receive an email (just in case they end up in spam) and the service providers you can choose from can be found at this link https://www.openreach.com/fibre-broadband/fttp-providers .
 
It’s so close now it’s within touching distance and a quick check has just shown Chiseldon addresses showing fibre available in the group above!
 
All areas in Phase 1 in Chiseldon, Liddington and Wanborough will be completed by May.
 
Next full update in 2 weeks.

Gigabit Fibre update 31-1-22:

 

We met with the project and civils teams this afternoon for an update on Wanborough, Liddington and Chiseldon builds.

 

Generally: Since our last update the build team have secured the right space in the Swindon exchange and routing work follows with engineers testing the fibre that has been laid and mapping it for their fibre ‘planning’ colleagues.

 

Once that is done they will start commissioning the first areas to be ready to go live from around 28/2.

 

Openreach will then email those residents to advise them to contact one of the companies listed as suitable providers. The build team will also try to remind residents and we will share the locations to assist. Your chosen supplier will then arrange for the final connection into your home. All being well some will have a connected service during March.

 

Chiseldon: Much of the core areas off New Road are going to be among the first. Hosdon Road works can’t start until 12th April due to the Brimble Hill closure in Wroughton. Home Close already prepped via other routes.

 

Butts Road has 1300m of duct and cabinets to do so will be a bit after the main areas. Badbury is in Phase 2 so officially by August, but the build team say they plan to be finished long before then.

 

Homes around Cambrai Road will be later as there are challenges identifying a suitable route for the fibre. Issues with protected trees.

 

Wanborough: Most core areas laid including the Beanlands, Magdalen Rd areas etc. Some queries on reinstatement works being addressed – had a senior Openreach exec visiting to look at damages to pavements, gardens etc and get rectified. Second phase homes West of Purley Road in Liddington will be earlier than August as per Badbury above.

 

We do have to remember that this is a couple of thousand homes being laid with fibre to connect back to the Swindon exchange – a whole new network. The teams are doing their best to meet and exceed targets and some residents in both areas will have gigabit speeds available via re-sellers during March.

 

Important Note: Just to clarify that if you go onto those websites at present, they will not show your address as part of the scheme as that won’t happen until the fibre is commissioned.

 

Incredibly fast is not far away, so don’t sign new contracts until your connection is ready- then we can all start renegotiating telephone, broadband and tv services based on the new offer!

 

 

Update 14th December 2021 following our meeting with Openreach Build and Project teams:

 

Gigabit Update: We had an update meeting 14/12 with the Openreach project manager to review progress and to get some answers to questions:

 

The main spine of the new fibre network is all in from Swindon to Wanborough/Liddington and Chiseldon.

 

Previously Openreach hoped to have some connections by Christmas, but this is now unlikely. The team went to the Swindon exchange expecting to use a number of sections which had been planned for our scheme, only to find that this has been used by someone else, so the Openreach 'Planning team' have to re-allocate space to our schemes within the exchange.

 

Once this work is done the engineers believe they could have the first 500 or so premises between the villages ready to 'light up' as capable of connecting. From the equipment being ready at the exchange to 'ready to light up the fibre' could be as little as 5 days work.

 

As soon as they get this within the exchange, Openreach advise the fibre retailers and will email residents to advise that connection to a service is possible. We will also be advised of the 'live' locations and would share that as a prompt. Residents would then sign up with a company and the final connection would be made to the property.

 

Once the network is live it will be possible for residents who didn't pledge to be able to request a service and the companies will then get an estimate and provide a cost.

 

Work is ongoing and in Wanborough the sub-contractors are being watched closely as they have caused quite a few negative complaints.

 

In Chiseldon large areas are completed - they are working towards Draycott Foliat, but Hodson is done (still working on Hodson Road). In Badbury all premises will need new ducts and owners will be approached by Openreach for permission to dig.

 

Other answers to questions: If you have overhead lines then the fibre will go to the pole and then the final connection will be made when you sign up for a service. Openreach would then do this connection for that company.

 

Some asked why isn't my pavement being dug up where others have been? There may already be suitable duct space available to use. Openreach surveyors know where all of the pledged premises are situated.

 

Phase 1 of the scheme (where pledges closed last May) will be built and completed by May 2022. Phase 2 (where pledges closed last August) will be built and completed by August, but Openreach will work to get this done sooner if possible.

How to contact Gary or Neil:

 

Email Gary - gary@ridgewayvillages.co.uk

Email Neil - neilrichardson1@icloud.com

 

Contact Neil for voucher issues in Chiseldon and Gary for voucher issues in Wanborough & Liddington.

 

Finally we have the news we've been working towards:

 

It's happening!

 

 

I met with Openreach this morning together with Neil Richardson (who has been working with the Chiseldon residents) and we are pleased to confirm that we have now officially moved into the build phase of the project – we did it!

 

It is definitely happening!!!!

 

Gigabit Fibre is definitely coming to our two communities!

 

As many of you have seen Openreach engineers have been in the area finalising their plans for the rollout and we will learn over the coming weeks the timescales for delivery, we’ll share that info with you as soon as we can. In order to claim the voucher Openreach have a 12 month period before they expire and most were pledged late last year.

 

If you live in Wanborough & Liddington or Chiseldon you could still miss out if you haven’t pledged your voucher and for those who haven’t engaged, it may not be too late.

 

Go to https://www.openreach.com/connectmycommunity to pledge.

 

Households who haven’t pledged or been part of the scheme may have to pay to connect to the new network later so whilst there is still an opportunity to use the free Government vouchers of £1500 for a home or £3,500 for a business it makes sense to take part.

 

Neil and I continue to explore ways of getting the un-validated vouchers converted and letters will be going out to these people shortly, we are also looking at a method of validating vouchers by SMS instead of email. If you haven't received your voucher please email me again as Openreach can access the vouchers again.

 

I would like to personally thank Rt Hon Robert Buckland QC MP who helped start this process from the first meeting he and I had with Openreach in April 2020 and celebrate the achievement through lockdown of promoting this! We have raised nearly £2m in pledges and Neil Richardson has been a fantastic advocate in Chiseldon, promoting and sharing the benefits, organising leaflets, as well as joining me on very regular briefings and workshops to achieve this.

 

Thank you to local printers (ESP Colour) who produced the Wanborough Leaflet for free and those helpers who did the deliveries.

 

This has also been a great community effort with many residents being Gigabit champions online and sharing the positive news with friends and neighbours, but please keep spreading the word to your friends/neighbours so nobody misses out.

 

We still have the other villages to address, and some missing streets and we are working on what can be attached to these schemes and what will have to be done separately under a new funding application.

 

Gary Sumner

Neil Richardson

Robert Buckland

 

 

Gary Sumner

Your Ridgeway Ward Councillor

 

 

 

Why is Ultra-fast broadband important and what is this scheme? 

 

A government scheme is giving us something for nothing (well nearly). Each home has a £1500 voucher to contribute towards building a brand new 'Gigabit Fibre' network in our villages to replace the ageing copper network (which will be retired in 2025 anyway).

 

 

 

A few answers to common questions:

 

1) Will the voucher cover the full cost of installing fibre to my home? YES

 

2) So I won't have to contribute if the cost of the scheme isn't covered? NO - if there aren't enough pledges to cover the scheme it won't be built.

 

3) What will it cost me? From around £25 per month

 

4) Why do I need it? Because life is becoming more digital, from downloading films, FaceTiming family and friends, making appointments, online shopping.

 

5) Will I be able to keep my phone number? YES (in 98% of cases according to BT).

 

6) Finally in 2025 Openreach will stop supporting the old copper newtwork and your current supplier will have to offer you an alternative - this could be a wireless connection - at this stage that is up to them but the copper lines will cease. 

 

7) If I don't connect now can I connect later? YES but you will have to pay the cost from the nearest part of the new network to your home - and that depends on distance and what they may have to dig up.

 

8) Is the value of my home affected? YES - according to a report from Government (read the link below) and supported by those in the property industry - increasingly people will choose whether to rent or buy based on connection speeds. It makes sense really as if working from home becomes a regular thing then a home with bad broadband could affect your career!

 

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/broadband-speed-boost-sees-home-values-jump-by-3500

 

 

If you have any questions please let me know?

 

Call me on 790814 or email gary@ridgewayvillages.co.uk

 

Gary

 

Gary Sumner

Your Ridgeway Ward Councillor

2nd March 2021

 

Address

Cllr Gary Sumner

Ridgeway Ward

Blenheim
Wanborough
Swindon
SN4 0AW

 

Tel: 01793 790814
E-mail:
gary@ridgewayvillages.co.uk

 

Or use our contact form.

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