Hundreds of homes in Leicestershire are set to see their broadband speeds soar thanks to a new partnership between housebuilder Redrow Homes and Openreach, Britain’s digital network business.
Around 400 properties at Redrow’s Hamilton Gardens development in Leicester, and 120 at their development at Park View in Hinckley, will be gaining access to superfast broadband with speeds up to 80Mbps – which is more than double the UK average broadband speed – where previously their typical speeds were less than 2Mbps.
The co-funded deal, which will see Openreach investing alongside Redrow Homes, will include around 3000 premises on housing developments across England and Wales bringing fibre broadband to the first tranche of residents by early October next year.
A recent survey by Redrow revealed that 98 per cent of people believe high-speed broadband comes is the most important factor for social well-being in their community - second only to doctor’s surgeries.
Redrow Homes CEO John Tutte, said: “When these homes in Leicestershire were first planned – they were not within the scope of any commercial or government investment plans for fibre broadband. We saw the potential of a national co-funding agreement with Openreach for homes we’d previously built that had lower than average broadband speeds. We wanted to improve our customers’ experience in homes that don’t have the benefit of full fibre technology.
“The results from our recent survey reflect the fact that high-speed broadband is becoming a must-have for home buyers who will continue to demand faster and better broadband connections, and we wanted to ensure that our customers weren’t left behind.”
Kim Mears, managing director of infrastructure delivery at Openreach, added: “I’m delighted to see customers in Leicestershire benefitting from this initiative, some of whom have struggled with lower than average speeds in the past. The success of this agreement shows the power of working together in partnership to find a solution to make high-speed broadband available for these customers.
“We are open to replicating this approach with other developers by looking with them at their developments over the past few years, and offering a competitive cost where they want to improve the broadband speeds of customers they have sold houses to.”
All future Redrow homes will benefit from full fibre FTTP technology delivering ultrafast speed as standard, but homes at Hamilton Gardens and Park View, were built before Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) technology was widely available free of charge to developers.
Openreach now has an agreement in place with the UK Government and the Home Builders Federation to provide ultrafast fibre broadband infrastructure free of charge to all new housing developments of 30 properties or more. Across Leicestershire, this has already benefitted more than 3,500 homes and flats in places like Ashby de la Zouch, Broughton Astley, Hinckley, Hugglescote, Leicester, Mountsorrel, Rothley, Shepshed and Wigston.
In addition, Openreach has teamed up with property firms across the UK to ensure new homeowners get instant access to their new high-speed broadband on the day they move in.
A new ‘framework agreement’** means Openreach is kept up-to-date by developers as homes and businesses are being built, and told when they are due to be completed, so that the ultrafast fibre network can be built in harmony with construction on the site.
More than nine out of ten premises across the UK can access superfast broadband speeds today and Openreach is working on hundreds of similar fibre partnership programmes across the country to bring faster internet access to even more homes and businesses.
People can check if fibre is available at their home or business by entering their postcode or landline number into the fibre checker on Openreach website [openreach.co.uk/whereandwhen] and, if it isn’t, you can find out how to help bring superfast broadband to your community by visiting communityfibre.openreach.co.uk
Openreach is Britain’s digital network business. That means we connect homes, mobile phone masts, schools, shops, banks, hospitals, libraries, broadcasters, governments and businesses – large and small – to the world. It’s our mission to build the best possible network with the highest quality service, and make sure that everyone in Britain can be connected.
Our 30,400 people work on behalf of more than 580 communications providers like Sky, TalkTalk, Vodafone and BT. Our fibre broadband network is the biggest in the UK, covering more than 26.8 million premises. And our technology is the basis of Britain’s thriving digital economy, which is the largest of the G20 countries.
We’re working hard to give people the broadband speeds they need at work and at home. Over the last decade, we’ve invested more than £11bn into our network. And we now manage more than 158 million kilometres of cable stretching from Scotland to Cornwall, and from Wales to the east coast. But we’re not stopping there – we’re making superfast broadband speeds available to thousands more homes and businesses every week.
We’re owned by BT Group and independently governed. Our business is highly regulated, and more than 90 per cent of our revenue comes from services that are regulated by Ofcom. Any company can access our products under the same prices, terms and conditions.
In the year ending 31 March 2017, we reported revenues of £5.1bn.
To find out more about us and what we do, go to openreach.co.uk.