A community group working to connect households to superfast broadband has been congratulated for its efforts. The community initiative in Fiskerton cum Morton has seen families connect with loved ones overseas through live-feed video chat from their homes, which previously wasn’t possible.
Residents created Fibre for Rural Nottinghamshire (F4RN) after being told they would be left out of a county superfast broadband scheme. They raised ?115,000 through community internet shares towards the project and have dug the trenches for the fibre-optic cables. The project has more than 100 subscribers, 83 of whom are now connected to superfast broadband. The eventual aim is to connect all 370 households in both villages. Southwell MP Mr Robert Jenrick took part in the group’s latest dig in Gravelly Lane, Fiskerton. They were preparing for ducting to be laid as part of the next stage to the scheme. “The scheme has really started to pay dividends. It has been a good investment,” said Mr Jenrick.
“I met around 20 volunteers from around the villages, along with farmers, who were digging trenches to lay the cables ready for connection. “They have made significant progress to connect houses to superfast broadband, which is a basic utility needed in modern life.” Mr Jenrick said he had met residents who had benefited from the service.
He said: “I met one person who has grandchildren in Australia and he was now able to FaceTime and Skype them. “Another teenager said she was able to log into the Minster School’s website to complete her homework. “This group didn’t complain when they were told their villages would miss out from the scheme, they simply took it into their own hands and came up with this brilliant scheme.
“They should be commended for their hard work.”
‘Superfast broadband is a basic utility for many’
The campaign started when the villages missed out on the BT and Nottinghamshire County Council ?20m Better Broadband scheme in 2014. F4RN, now a registered company, has laid cables at the Arthur Radford Memorial Ground, Southwell, leading into Morton; and Cooks Lane, Fiskerton. The ducting has been connected to a network connection provided by Openreach. The scheme has involved building a wireless network directly to properties. The team will then overlay the network with fibre to increase the performance and work towards the original goal of fibre to every home or property. Wireless broadband is delivered through radio waves while fibre optic signal is transmitted along the fibre using light so there is no reduction in speed or quality depending on how far away the house is. Committee member Mr Paul Newton said: “We have just over 100 subscribers and 83 of these properties have already been connected. “Robert Jenrick joined us for our latest dig and rightly pointed out that superfast broadband is a basic utility for many. “Many homeowners have given us permission to cross their land to dig trenches, while F4RN has had many volunteers who have helped, along with farmers who gave us a plough machine that enabled us to lay the cables deep in some of the trenches.
“The aim eventually would be to connect 370 homes in the two villages.” Mr Newton said it would take another two to three years for the entire project to be completed. Those who want to be connected to the scheme have to pay a connection charge of ?210.
That covers the installation and all equipment needed to provide the broadband connection.
The monthly subscription is ?36 per household.
Residents of two Nottinghamshire villages fed up of living with slow internet services decided to take matters, quite literally into their own hands. They’re funding, building and managing their own broadband network. It’s four months since the first cables went down and more than 100 residents are now seeing the benefits to their lives and businesses.
Watch: Our reporter Nancy Cole has been talking to residents from Fiskerton and Morton in Nottinghamshire.
15:0214:44 Friday 05 August 2016
The last remaining street without superfast broadband in Selston has finally been brought up to speed. Lilley Close residents can now access the net as fast as everyone else thanks to a new scheme run by Nottinghamshire County Council and BT. The Better Broadband for Nottingham (BBfN) scheme is providing access to superfast broadband to hundreds of communities in Nottinghamshire, including some of the county s most rural areas.
Sue Murphy is amongst the first residents to take advantage of the availability of superfast broadband in Lilley Close. Sue said: We used to live in another part of Selston which had good broadband and never envisaged not having similar availability when we moved.
However, we could only get download speeds of around 1Mbps at Lilley Close, which meant working from home was tricky with so many services that companies opt for now, such as MS Lync and voip call services, only available online. Watching on-demand TV or movies was impossible, unless you started a download in the morning to watch that evening. Sue transferred to a new superfast service in June this year and has seen a massive difference.
She added, The speed increase has been huge. For work, I no longer get dropped calls and the strength of my connection is stronger, even during peak times.
It s great for my family to be able to actually watch on-demand TV, on demand! FaceTime calls with my family are more stable and we are able to see them, pixel free and with no buffering. Lilley Close is one of over 130 areas in Nottinghamshire which will either get access to fibre broadband for the first time or see existing provision boosted to superfast speeds by Spring 2018 as part of phase two of the Better Broadband for Nottinghamshire (BBfN) programme.
The extension of the scheme, which began earlier this year, will cover a further 18,000 properties, in addition to the 62,000 homes and businesses rom BBfN phase one.