CityFibre begins £30m full-fibre build out in Rochdale

UK’s third largest infrastructure provider continues with its cross-UK gigabit fibre rollout in Lancashire town to benefit residents, businesses and services

Work by CityFibre to bring gigabit broadband connectivity within reach of almost every home and business in the Rochdale region is underway, with the company breaking ground on a new full-fibre infrastructure roll-out.

CityFibre’s full-fibre network roll-out programme is on track to serve up to a third of the UK by 2025, representing up to eight million premises in 285 cities, towns and villages, as well as 800,000 businesses, 400,000 local authority sites and 250,000 5G access points.

The £30m Rochdale network will give homes a platform for over-the-top and other streaming services and is being delivered by Manchester-based utility and infrastructure service provider Network Plus on behalf of the independent network provider. The overall project is expected to reach completion by 2024, with the first services going live “much sooner”.

According to Neil Emmott, leader of Rochdale Borough Council, CityFibre’s delivery of its infrastructure programme is a once-in-a-generation upgrade that will bring many benefits to the town’s residents, businesses and services.

“Futureproofing Rochdale’s digital infrastructure is a priority, especially during a time when connectivity is central to the way we live and work,” he said. “Knowing that Rochdale is ready for the digital age will hopefully unlock an enthusiasm in the residents to take full advantage of the services rolled out over the coming months, so they too can level up, similarly to other parts of the UK involved in the investment.”

Steve Thorpe, CityFibre’s area manager for Rochdale, said it was an exciting time for CityFibre and the town as work on the new full-fibre network got underway.

“A contributing factor to the growth of Rochdale is using the opportunities that digital innovation and transformation provide. People can take advantage of those new digital technologies and better their lives. It’s important to remember that any short-term disruption will pay off tremendously in the long term,” he said. 

Internet service providers, including Vodafone, TalkTalk and Zen Internet, have already committed to providing services based on the new gigabit network.

Zen has been operating from Rochdale for the past 27 years and, commenting on its commitment to the new project, founder and chairman Richard Tang said: “Deemed the gold rush decade, the 2020s will see widespread infrastructure development for full- fibre broadband across the nation, and by 2030, almost everyone will have made the switch to full-fibre.

“In another significant step in our journey, we’re extremely proud to be working with CityFibre to bring this ground-breaking technology to our home town. With our continued focus on people, the planet and community, we hope that the people of Rochdale will come on this journey with us and choose Zen as their broadband provider.”

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