Fibre to the premises broadband project update #2

Post in Utilities by Steve Jones
BT tell us that they will be starting the build of the fibre infrastructure in the next few weeks. Work will begin at Aultguish and continue through to Little Garve.

The previous update reported that

  • the FTTP project was approved by LCT in December 2017
  • contracts were signed with BT OpenReach in January 2018
  • planning work by BT OpenReach and HIE is underway working towards a target completion date of end 2018

What’s happening now

BT has told us they will start the build of the fibre infrastructure in the next few weeks. Work will begin at Aultguish and continue through to Little Garve.

We will shortly introduce you to the members of the BT OpenReach team who will be doing the work. You will get to meet them as the infrastructure is built in our area.

We will let you know when we have more details on timing for this leg, and for the Corriemoillie to Achnasheen leg.

Getting fibre to your property

At this early stage in the roll-out of the project, we want you to understand how fibre cable will get to your property. There is a three-stage process:

Stage 1 - Build the fibre infrastructure

This is being done by the BT OpenReach teams. They tap into the fibre spines that already run down our main roads, and lay fibre to Connection Box Terminals (CBTs) within 160m of your property.

Stage 2 - Lay new ducts (if required)

BT OpenReach then agrees with you THE METHOD and ROUTE by which fibre cable subsequently gets from the box to the house. They test any existing ducts and telegraph poles used by your phone line to see if they can be used. If existing ducts or poles can be used, no further immediate action is taken. If new poles are needed, BT OpenReach may install them immediately, or wait until later in the process. If existing poles or existing ducts cannot be used for the new fibre cable, it is likely that a new duct from the CBT to your property will be needed. BT OpenReach agrees with you the route across your property for the duct and leaves enough duct for the job.

For reasons of potential liability, GDB cannot commission a contractor to do this work across your private land for you. It is then your responsibility to arrange for the digging of the new duct trench (only 150 mm deep, 450 mm under vehicle tracks) and installing the duct in it. This contract will be between you and your chosen contractor. GDB will identify several contractors that express an interest in doing this work for you, but you will be under no obligation to use our suggestions. You get quotes for the work and apply to GDB for a grant to cover the cost of the work before it begins.

It may be of benefit to club together with other people nearby needing similar work. We will look at this when we know who needs a self-dig.

GDB is working with the LCT for full funding for timely completion of this work. If the self-dig is only a small and simple job, or you do not want to wait for a contractor to do the work, you can do choose to do it yourself, and not wait for LCT grant funding for the work.

BT OpenReach tells us that in their experience a new duct is typically required for around 35% of properties.

At the end of this ‘build’ stage, the MEANS to get a fibre cable from the CBT to the property is in place. BUT the actual fibre cable is not installed. The installation of the fibre cable happens in the next stage.

Stage 3 - Connect fibre cable to your property

You are now ready to order a fibre service. You place an order with an Internet Service Provider (ISP) capable of delivering BT OpenReach enabled FTTP broadband.

The ISP arranges for fibre cable to be installed from the CBT to the house. (They outsource this to BT OpenReach).  The ISP also does any necessary internal fibre cabling, connection to router and commissioning.

There may be a small charge for this work depending on the fibre internet package you order. It is your responsibility to pay this charge.

The time from ordering a fibre service to having it available at the property is up to 8 weeks.

You now have a fibre-to-the-premises broadband service!

Next Update

We will provide further updates when we have new information from BT OpenReach or on any other aspect of the project.

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