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Acceleration of Full-Fibre Broadband deployed in very Rural or Hard to Reach Premises

Categories

Approval Status

 

Fully approved

Delivery Status

 

Project in progress

Expected completion date

 

Winter 2023

The premises being targeted with this measure are very rural and hard-to reach business premises, which currently have broadband speeds of less than 30 Mb/s.  Potential for economic activity in these areas is substantial. Demand for fast broadband services is nearly 15% higher in these rural areas than the average for Essex.

Within the current Superfast Essex Phase 4b broadband rollout across Essex, it has become clear that in a significant number of cases the cost of deployment in rural areas had been underestimated by suppliers, and up to 10% of the premises in the current rollout scope will exceed the contractual cost cap.

The project will implement fast deployment and maximise the capacity of the current delivery arrangements by retaining the planned delivery scope where possible within the existing live rollout contracts. This project complements other Essex broadband projects currently in progress or being planned – as set out in the table below – and mechanisms are in place to ensure there is no scope overlap between these projects.

Project Objectives

Objective 1: expand access to superfast broadband connectivity to as many of the remaining unserved areas of Essex as possible within the available funding, working towards 99% coverage.

Objective 2: drive the installation of full-fibre internet connections as soon as possible, in line with the ambitious government target to reach 95% of the UK by 2025.

Objective 3: Kickstart business recovery: fast internet connectivity will be a cornerstone of the economic recovery post COVID 19 and opportunities presented by the spike in take-up of online trading, learning and customer engagement platforms require further infrastructure improvements to as many premises as possible as soon as possible

It is expected that up to 80 jobs will be created.

Project Update November 2021 – At the November Accountability Board meeting it was agreed that the project met the conditions and criteria for the retention of GBF funding beyond the 31 March 2022 for a maximum period of 12 months. This is subject to Strategic Board. endorsement at its meeting in December 2021.

Project Outputs
Jobs created/safeguarded 80
New super/ultrafast broadband connections 380

£85m of investment to East Sussex, Essex, Kent, Medway, Southend and Thurrock

The Getting Building Fund focuses on projects that can progress quickly and that will stimulate and better integrate economies in some of the most economically impacted and COVID-affected parts of the South East.

£85m of Getting Building Fund investment has been secured, enabling delivery of 34 projects across East Sussex, Essex, Kent, Medway, Southend and Thurrock.

Find out more here 

Funding value: £680,000
Total Project cost: TBC
Return to Capital Investment