Partnership secures speedy go-ahead for broadband upgrade

Thanks to an effective partnership with the London Borough of Bexley’s street works team, Openreach engineers have made superfast broadband available to around 10,000 more homes and business in the borough during 2017/18.

Their positive collaboration has also encouraged Openreach to include Bexley in the first phase of its ‘Fibre to the Premises’ investment programme, which will provide faster, more reliable broadband technology to 3 million front doors by the end of 2020.

This programme could see around 25,000 homes in Crayford and Erith being upgraded to ultrafast and future-proof Fibre to the Premises (FTTP) technology during 2018/19.

The news has been welcomed by the Leader of the Council, Councillor Teresa O’Neill OBE: “We are delighted with the results of our partnership working with Openreach because broadband is now a vital part of the borough’s infrastructure.

“Fast and reliable broadband will benefit thousands of local people and make the borough an even more attractive location for businesses.

"Securing this kind of valuable investment in the borough is part of our commitment to #doitforbexley."

The technology provides additional capacity for data-hungry services and applications, such as Virtual Reality gaming and smart homes, where a network of online sensors can coordinate and control home appliances – from thermostats, doorbells and security cameras to door locks, lawn sprinklers, window blinds and washing machines.

And for businesses, it further improves their ability to improve the way they work, explore global markets through the use of new technology, backup systems and processes, as well as operate more efficiently thanks to much faster upload and download speeds.

It also adds even more reliability and resilience to the network, meaning things are less likely to go wrong in the event of unforeseen circumstances or extreme weather and conditions.

Kim Mears, Openreach’s MD for Infrastructure Development, added: “Bexley already has access to extensive high-speed broadband, with around 98 per cent of households and businesses now able to connect to speeds of 30Mbps and above.

“We’re now taking this to the next level by working closely with local partners like the London Borough of Bexley to build a future proof, ultrafast FTTP network capable of 1Gbps speeds – that’s about 24 times faster than the current UK average of 44Mbps.

“This has the potential to completely transform the way people go online and opens up a world of opportunity. It’s also an important step in future-proofing Britain’s broadband network and supporting emerging mobile technologies like 5G.”