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Caxton and Malvern villages first with 1,000 votes for BT fibre exchanges

Caxton in Cambridgeshire and Malvern in Worcestershire are the first villages to register more than 1,000 votes in BT's Race to Infinity competition to find out where there is demand for fibre-based broadband.

BT said in a statement more than 200,000 votes have been cast since the competition opened in October. They cover the UK from northern Scotland to the south of England. The competition closes at the end of the year.

BT has promised to upgrade the five winning exchanges by 2012. BT has an on-going £2.5bn programme to lay fibre to the cabinet to cover two-thirds of UK premises.

The winning exchanges will be based on the number of votes as a percentage of houses connected to the exchange and will be subject to survey. "When an exchange is enabled there will be some premises not able to receive fibre," BT said.

BT said it would "engage" with any community where at least 75% of homes and businesses voted for fibre-based service. It would ask for financial guarantees from the community to cover the cost of laying and operating fibre to the exchange.

Voting progress can be monitored on the Race to Infinity interactive map.


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