More than 10,000 homes and businesses in West Oxfordshire will be connected to ultrafast broadband by the end of 2019, accessing speeds of up to 1Gbps (1,000Mbps), following the announcement of two major infrastructure projects for the area.
The first project is an £8 million plan to bring full fibre to 4,600 properties, jointly funded by West Oxfordshire District Council (WODC) and Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) to the tune of £3.1m, and rural broadband specialist Gigaclear for £5m. In addition, Gigaclear has announced that it is investing a further £8m to connect another 5,700 homes in the area, linking existing networks together and extending the provider’s already significant footprint in the district.
The fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) technology will not only give users access to much faster speeds than currently available, it will also be reliable. Many customers, particularly those in rural communities, have been struggling with aging copper wire based networks that won’t be able to support the increasing demands of technology and the needs of consumers for both work and play.
Joe Frost, Gigaclear’s business development director, said: “We’re delighted to expand our footprint in West Oxfordshire, not only through our contract with WODC and the Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) rural broadband programme, but also through our own commercial investment.
“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 West Oxfordshire District Council, said: “Ultrafast broadband is essential for individuals and businesses in the area so we’re 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.”
West Oxfordshire is the latest in a series successful BDUK tenders for Gigaclear, which has previously seen it deliver broadband networks to tens of thousands of homes and businesses across Berkshire, Devon, Somerset, Gloucestershire, Herefordshire and Northamptonshire.