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Gigaclear ramps up broadband network build in Oxfordshire

More than 10,000 properties in rural Oxfordshire will get access to 1Gbps FTTP broadband by the end of 2019

A total of 10,300 homes and businesses in west Oxfordshire are to receive gigabit-capable fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) broadband connections by the end of 2019, in the latest expansion of Gigaclear’s network build.

The project will be split into two phases: a joint investment of £3.1m from West Oxfordshire District Council (WODC) and Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK), and a further £5m from Gigaclear, to cover 4,600 premises; then a further £8m investment from Gigaclear to connect 5,700 premises by linking its existing networks together to extend its footprint further across the area, which includes the towns of Burford, Chipping Norton and Witney.

“We are delighted to expand our footprint in west Oxfordshire, not only through our contract with WODC and the BDUK rural broadband programme, but also through our own commercial investment,” said Gigaclear business development director Joe Frost.

“Broadband is no longer just nice to have, it is a vital utility. Full-fibre is the only future proofed solution, so by working with the district council, Gigaclear is helping to secure the area’s digital economy.”

Colin Dingwall, cabinet member for broadband at WODC, added: “Ultrafast broadband is essential for individuals and businesses in the area, so we are pleased that, through the contract with Gigaclear, we can see this investment through. Oxfordshire is known as the UK’s leading centre for innovation and we want to make sure we have the infrastructure to support this.”

Besides an extensive network build in other parts of Oxfordshire, Gigaclear is also delivering BDUK-supported projects, including in Hereford and Gloucestershire, Northamptonshire and Berkshire, among others.

It has previously claimed that consumer take-up of its FTTP broadband product in its BDUK-funded roll-outs substantially exceeds that seen on the slower, fibre-to-the-cabinet (FTTC) connections that Openreach rolled out under the terms of its original BDUK contracts.

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Separately, Gigaclear has also signed a deal with Carillion telent to address connectivity problems in south-west England.

This project will use less-disruptive narrow trenching technology to deliver FTTP broadband services to 80,000 properties in the region.

“Carillion telent has been providing civils, cabling and poling infrastructure solutions within the telecoms arena since 2009 and boasts in excess of 35 years’ combined experience,” said Carillion telent MD Stephen Sullivan. “We are delighted to support a project that will be both socially and economically transformative for the community by delivering speeds up to 28 times faster than the UK average.”

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