I am pleased to report that there is very good progress being made in upgrading Madingley exchange for superfast broadband.
There are three forms of fibre technology being rolled out, Fibre to the Cabinet (FTTC), Fibre to the Premises (FTTP), and Exchange Only (EO). There will be two cabinets, one in Hardwick and one in Coton. The other villages will be served by FTTP, with a small smattering of Exchange only lines.
The Race to Infinity winning areas are among the first areas in the country to get deployment that includes all three. It means we will potentially have the highest percentage coverage in an exchange area anywhere in the UK. BT expect that 100% of premises will see an increase in speed, with 99.9% getting speeds of over 15 Mb/s and 0.1% of premises receiving between 2Mb/s and 15Mb/s.
Because the deployment involves more FTTP than envisaged, BT expect to use 106 kms or 99 miles of fibre cable! This, coupled with the difficulties that have been encountered with cable ducts means that the rollout has taken longer than was initially anticipated, and that the rollout will be staggered from April 2012 onwards, possibly through to July 2012.
The cabinet in Hardwick has been installed at the junction of Cambridge Road and Limes Road and is awaiting commissioning, so it can be brought into service. The good news is that BT is confident that those within 2km range of the cabinet will be able to start ordering the service as from April 2012. The cable installations in Caldecote have been taking place for a number of weeks now, as captured in this picture. White vans have also been seen in Coton/Madingley areas.
The service is not going to be automatically adopted. Anyone who wants superfast broadband service will have to order it either from their current telephone provider or from BT. The system is being built out for open access, so that other telephone suppliers can buy wholesale from BT and supply their own customer base. Check with your supplier to see if they have signed up with BT to get on the superfast broadband network. Nag them if they haven’t.
BT has offered to help us celebrate the first orders, and have asked for suggestions. This may include sponsoring a local event or award, donating two free Infinity lines to deserving causes, and there is the opportunity for the BT Infinity bus to visit the area over the summer!