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New hyper-fast broadband for thousands of homes to be ready by end of 2020

PUBLISHED: 11:30 04 May 2020 | UPDATED: 09:04 05 May 2020

County Broadband launched its roll-out of hyper-fast full-fibre broadband to villages in north Essex last year and has now revealed it aims to lay almost 14,000 miles of cable by the end of 2020. Picture: Warren Page/County Broadband

County Broadband launched its roll-out of hyper-fast full-fibre broadband to villages in north Essex last year and has now revealed it aims to lay almost 14,000 miles of cable by the end of 2020. Picture: Warren Page/County Broadband

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Thousands of Colchester, Braintree and Chelmsford homes which have been “blighted by years of poor rural digital connectivity” will get their brand new hyper-fast broadband by December 2020, it has been confirmed.

County Broadband launched its roll-out of hyper-fast full-fibre broadband to villages in north Essex last year and has now revealed it aims to lay almost 14,000 miles of cable by the end of 2020. Picture: Warren Page/County BroadbandCounty Broadband launched its roll-out of hyper-fast full-fibre broadband to villages in north Essex last year and has now revealed it aims to lay almost 14,000 miles of cable by the end of 2020. Picture: Warren Page/County Broadband

County Broadband last year started installing 14,000 miles of full-fibre broadband cable in Colchester, Braintree and Chelmsford, which will provide network speeds of up to 1,000Mbps – almost 20 times faster than the UK average.

It will mean HD films and music can be downloaded in seconds and will give more than 50 villages in Essex the fastest broadband speeds in the country, at a time when the coronavirus crisis has showed that connectivity is more important than ever.

The firm has now revealed the first phase of the roll-out will completed by the end of 2020, with work continuing during the current Covid-19 lockdown.

Lloyd Felton, chief executive of County Broadband, said: “We remain committed to laying almost 14,000 miles – double the moon’s circumference – of hyper-fast full-fibre broadband cables to thousands of rural and remote residents and businesses in north Essex who have been blighted by years of poor rural digital connectivity.

“The current mass trial of working from home, increased reliance on the internet for streaming TV and films, and access to online educational services amid the coronavirus is shining a unique light on the urgent need to banish old Victorian copper networks that are simply unfit for modern life.

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“The engines of our local economies will need restarting over the coming months and we believe full-fibre broadband will play a vital role in helping businesses and residents to respond and adapt to the ‘new normal’ – from enabling high-quality video conferences to seamless home entertainment.”

Currently, slow copper cables deliver the internet from green roadside boxes to people’s homes.

That means the connection speed has already halved at just 600 metres away from the cabinet, particularly causing slow internet speeds at peak times.

The new networks will be fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP), connected to directly into properties and offices – thereby boosting internet speeds.

Work to install the 14,000 miles of cable, which is enough to do 70,000 laps of Colchester United’s JobServe Community Stadium, will take place during the current UK-wide lockdown – as broadband is an essential utility.

Mr Felton added: “We are all facing difficult and challenging times but we would like to reassure rural communities in Essex that we are here to support them.

“The highest standards of safety and community sensitivity are of paramount importance as we continue business as usual.”

Residents and business owners can find out if they can get their property connected to hyper-fast fibre broadband by visiting www.countybroadband.co.uk and entering their postcode.


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