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'Forgotten' villages to benefit from ultrafast broadband network

PUBLISHED: 14:12 25 April 2019

Country Broadband chief executive Lloyd Felton with the County Broadband team
Picture: WARREN PAGE

Country Broadband chief executive Lloyd Felton with the County Broadband team Picture: WARREN PAGE

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Specialist rural broadband provider County Broadband has begun the construction of its new ultrafast full fibre broadband network - which it says will bring some of the UK's fastest internet speeds to rural communities in East Anglia.

County Broadband operational control centre at its Essex headsquarters.
Picture: WARREN PAGECounty Broadband operational control centre at its Essex headsquarters. Picture: WARREN PAGE

It is planning further growth and is anticipating a 50-strong workforce by the end of year.

Based in Aldham near Colchester in Essex, County Broadband has also increased the size of its operations and service centre, demonstrating its commitment to the regional economy.

Unlike some other providers, the firm does not rely on public money or contributions from residents and businesses to finance construction of the fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) networks.

The company has secured access to a £46million private investment fund and is focussed on transforming rural communities in the region into future-ready digital hotspots.

Chief executive Lloyd Felton said: “Our FTTP infrastructure will propel forgotten villages across East Anglia into the 21st Century and beyond, whilst delivering significant investment in their long-term prosperity.

“As a business we are expanding rapidly and so are contributing to the local economy on many levels – through digital connectivity, employment opportunities and work for other contractors.

“We are proving to be a 'disruptor' in the broadband industry. The Aviva Investors' funding has enabled us to forge ahead with our strategy to service more than 30,000 homes and businesses in the East Anglian region.”

The construction of the full fibre network commenced in Cornish Hall End, a village near Braintree by May.

It will be followed by other Essex and Suffolk villages including Cold Norton, Foxearth and Pentlow, Bulmer, Gestingthorpe, Stambourne, Wickham St Paul and Pebmarsh.

Ipswich-based contractor, Telec Networks, is working with County Broadband on the first phase of construction in North Essex.

Other local companies are also set to benefit from the growth of the company, said a spokesman for County Broadband.

FTTP is the installation of fibre optic cables directly to individual homes and premises, with speeds of up to 1,000Mbps (one Gigabit).

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