I wanted to keep everyone up to date with the latest progress on the local Fibre Broadband initiative, and to thank all those people who have registered an interest so far.
Due to the high level of interest we have now been able to expand the Community Fibre Partnership (CFP) to cover all 66 properties in the Keltybridge area. Openreach has been asked to create a delivery plan which covers the entire area and the next step will be for Openreach to provide a plan for the rollout.
We have also challenged the broadband line speed assessments for many of the properties in the Keltybridge area. The reason for this is that Openreach has categorised many properties as having speeds above 30mpbs which renders them ineligible for the Scottish Government funding for fibre broadband. However, after some initial investigation we believe that only Abbots Wynd falls into this category (and those properties are only just above 30mbps).
As soon as Openreach have provided the updated plan I will provide a further update.
Hi Folks, it’s been a long time since we provided an update on the Keltybridge Fibre Broadband, but we have been working away in the background and I’m happy to say that we have now established a Community Fibre Partnership (CFP) to implement Fibre broadband in Keltybridge, Blairadam and Middleton Park.
You will possibly have noticed the Openreach vans working in the area and that a couple of our telegraph poles now have “Fibre Overhead” warning signs on them so there has been some progress on connecting us up.
However, the plan for our area is very patchy with only few properties identified on the rollout plan. As a result we have been advised by Openreach and the Scottish Government to establish a CFP to ensure that all the properties are included in the rollout plan.
With this in mind I will shortly be canvasing all the properties in the area to confirm who wants to be added to the Openreach rollout plan as this will help Openreach create a joined up plan for the whole area which ensures properties are not left behind in this upgrade.
I’ll be publishing more information here as I get it, and I’ll soon be setting up a mailing list so everyone who is interested can keep up to date with progress.
Hi Folks, it’s been a long time since the last update for Keltybridge and Blairadam. The Maryburgh & Blairforge project is going ahead, but it looks like Keltybridge and Blairadam have been rolled into the fibre upgrade for the Kelty exchange as properties in our area are now showing up as being part of the next build-out of the network. OpenReach are requesting that people who are interested in fibre broadband register their interest here – https://www.openreach.com/fibre-broadband/fibre-for-home
OpenReach were seen in Keltybridge today surveying the phonelines, so we live in hope! I’ll provide any updates as soon as I have more details. Hopefully you’ll see a message similar to this when you register your interest.
For many years now the prospect of better broadband for Maryburgh and Blairforge has been a long saga of empty promises. Wireless ISPs, the Scottish Government’s delayed Reaching 100% programme, and lots of discussion about community schemes funded by the UK Government’s Gigabit Broadband Voucher Scheme. Not surprisingly, the community is disillusioned and frustrated.
However, now there is total clarity on UK and Scottish Government schemes and our community’s status in these plans.
Maryburgh and Blairforge are not covered by the Scottish Government’s R100 contract for Central Scotland which was awarded to Openreach and outlined in January 2020 by the Minister for Connectivity, Paul Wheelhouse MSP. You can check the status of your property at:
Although this sounds disappointing, it is actually very good news for Maryburgh and Blairforge. On 18th August 2020 Paul Wheelhouse MSP announced the Scottish Broadband Voucher Scheme, which will provide all homes and businesses not covered by the R100 contract up to £5,000 for broadband upgrades. These vouchers can be combined with UK Government Gigabit Broadband Voucher Scheme funding, so residential homes can get up to £6,500 and businesses up to £8,500 each. This includes sole-traders and the self-employed.
This funding is provided directly to suppliers who build broadband networks, and accessed by homes and businesses “pledging vouchers” to suppliers. No money is passed to residents or community groups.
So although Maryburgh and Blairforge are not covered by Openreach’s R100 contract for Central Scotland, the good news is that using vouchers a Full Fibre to the Premises (FTTP) upgrade for the area can be fully funded and guaranteed to be complete within 12 months of securing an agreement with Openreach. Many years ahead of most households under the R100 contract.
However, being excluded from the R100 contract means that the community needs to be active and take ownership of organising a broadband solution.
The proposition for Maryburgh and Blairforge residents is simple:
We can secure a Full Fibre to the Premises upgrade at zero cost. This future-proofs broadband for many generations and enables us to order broadband at any speed between 30 Mbps and 1,000 Mbps (gigabit) right away.
Although a community project, each upgrade is private and individual, i.e. it’s not a shared network.
Your only commitment is to pledge a voucher, which means you must take a broadband service for aminimum of 12 months once the upgrade is complete. The choice of broadband provider is slightly limited right now, but does include BT, Zen, TalkTalk, Aquiss, Andrews & Arnold, Zen and Vodafone. Others such as Sky, SSE, Plusnet and EE are not yet available, but we expect them to be very soon.
This approach to broadband upgrades is proven locally with 178 Full Fibre to the Premises upgrades now live in Cleish, Classlochie, Mawcarse and Cuthill as of August 2020.
Full Fibre to the Premises (FTTP) is the solution that Openreach will be delivering to the majority of homes under the Scottish Government’s R100 contract. FTTP is not just faster, it delivers consistent speeds and is far more reliable, stable and resilient to weather events such as flooding. Whether your household is low-latency gaming, watching Strictly on BBC iPlayer or running critical business systems, Full Fibre to the Premises is the ultimate broadband solution: https://www.openreach.com/fibre-broadband
Openreach have quoted for the 25 Maryburgh and Blairforge premises mapped out in figure one; and it is comfortably affordable with vouchers, assuming enough of the community pledge them.
Please get in contact with us at firstname.lastname@example.org to confirm or re-confirm your interest.You can re-register at http://eepurl.com/hbxOxH
the Scottish Government’s announcement* to award BT (Openreach) an £83
million “R100″ contract to upgrade Central Scotland, we are working
with Openreach to assess how this might impact the Blairadam Community
Fibre Partnership. We expect to have a position by the 21st February.
The Scottish Government contract does not necessarily mean that
Community Fibre Partnerships cannot proceed, in fact it may make them more
viable. So that we are in a position to proceed quickly when the time comes, we
encourage anyone who hasn’t registered interest yet, to do so: https://ruralgigabit.org/registerinterest
Rural Gigabit have been working with Perth & Kinross Council on a programme
to deliver full-fibre upgrades for village halls, including the Tabernacle
Hall. This initiative should drive down the cost of the Blairadam
Community Fibre Partnership and could speed up progress of any engineering
We are working very closely with the Cleish Hills Community Interest Company, which has successfully upgraded multiple properties in Cleish and the surrounding area – for more information click on the link below.