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back to article BT promises biggest ever rural broadband project

BT, with a large slice of help from the European Union, is promising the largest ever superfast broadband programme for Cornwall. The money is coming from European convergence funds (£53.5m) and from BT (£78.5m). It is the largest single EU investment in the UK Sally Davis, chief executive for BT Wholesale, said: "This will …

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Silver badge
WTF?

"largest ever superfast broadband programme"

All words, words, words ... no numbers though?

BT: What is "superfast" in BT parlance?

I use satellite InterNet and it certainly wouldn't make the top 5 in most places.

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Anonymous Coward

Words, words, words...

That's because,

It's good to talk!

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Good news for the Corns!

I hear that by 2030, they hope to have electricity as well.

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Bronze badge

Well....

You may scoff, but my ex comes from Cornwall and when I was down there a few years ago (and we're not talking long - maybe 3-4 years), one of my ex's friends stopped us in the street because she had to tell us the exciting news that she was finally getting electricity. I assumed it was a joke, but it really wasn't.

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FAIL

How about sorting the inner cities too

Its great how they talk about having superfast broadband out in the sticks where its nice and green and all you can see is rolling hills and wind farms. How about sorting the aged wiring of inner cities too. I live in Leicester and the broadband to my home via BT is less than 1MB. I live about than 3km from the exchange which is sited in the city centre. Less than 1MB!!!! Thats scandalous!

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Unhappy

I second that....

I too live in the delightful, quaint city of Leicester, though sometimes I even get 2Mb! The real frustrating thing is I live a stones through away from a Virgin cable street where they can get 20Mb+.

BT's archaic infrastructure, combined with penny pinching and a smattering of spin doctoring (as already mentioned, no figures - what is 'superfast'?) cause everyone to suffer. Trouble is, they still have the mindset of a nationalised company - they don't really give a damn so long as the union staff are happy (and the shareholders to a lesser extent).

This country's comms are truly scuppered until someone beats BT over the head with a big stick.

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Boffin

@Fullbeem

"I live in Leicester and the broadband to my home via BT is less than 1MB. I live about than 3km from the exchange which is sited in the city centre. Less than 1MB!!!! Thats scandalous!"

Interesting question. If you switch your broadband supplier (unless its to Cable and you end up with Vermin) the wire is still a BT wire going to a BT exchange.

But if you *did* switch and it went up what would that say about BT's back end network?

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Thumb Up

Can I get a . . .

"Well done the EU!" Your VAT pounds at work.

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Unhappy

That's great news

Now, can we have the same type of promise for the midst of nowhere that is apparently South London?

I live in Kennington, and the BT site is very kind in telling me (through ommission, as is their wont) that we don't even have FTTC here, yet.

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WTF?

You ain't wrong...

I know of an office on the outskirts of a county town just outside the M25 whose ADSL peaks at about half a megabit. On a good day. It's like the last decade didn't happen.

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Coat

132 million

£132 million? I presume they're starting with electricity first... then teaching the locals not to fear the "magic picture boxes".

Mine's the one with a Cornish Premier Pastie in the pocket...

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Happy

How much!?

Speaking as a Cornishman (and that’s a proper Cornishman not some fuckwit who’s moved down here) I’m surprised it’s going to cost as much as £134M as no one actually lives in Cornwall, its full of holiday letts and second homes.

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Welcome

Ah, but...

How many of those second homes are owned by senior BT bods?

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That is some big chip on your pasty munching shoulder

What happens when all the "fuck wits" have had kids and their kids have had kids etc etc? Do they become "real cornish" like you or stay "fuck wits"? When did your "fuck wit" ancestors arrive in pasty land?

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Pint

WAHEY - IT"S PORN PARTY TIME IN CORNWALL

so let me get this straight.

there's 127 people in Cornwall

we're dumping £132 M on them

Talk about an amazingly positive ROI, there should be 30-40 startups competing for a slice of the pubic tit them for that kind of P/E ratio.

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BT

The goon from the BT advert lives in my village in Cornwall. Not an interesting fact but true.

I hope they spend the cash better than they did with ACTNOW

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Re: BT

ACTNOW was a reasonable effort, and if it wasn't for that project then broadband in most of Cornwall would still be at the ISDN stages except in Truro! Readily agree that ACTNOW was not managed properly, EU funds were used to line the pockets of a number of individuals at Cornwall Enterprise (and probably a few people at BT too, but I can only prove what was shared amongst certain individuals at Cornwall Enterprise).

This just goes to show that BT isn't interested in serious broadband deployments unless someone else is footing a significant portion of the bill. I saw some accurate figures from Cornwall Enterprise about 7 years ago that demonstrated ADSL deployment was cheaper in rural areas than in cities per household by as much as 35%!

Back in the 90s in the Highlands of Scotland it was a similar story - BT deployed a large fibre network that was paid for almost entirely by Objective 1 funding. Once the Objective 1 funding stopped, BT stopped maintaining that fibre network, and eventually replaced it in 2001 with - wait for it - copper...

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Flame

Open to tender?

The EU plans to fine the UK gov (i.e. tax-payer) for its failure to act in the BT/Phorm debacle.

The EU also plans to subsidise the rural extension of BT's snooping network!

A case of robbing the victims and giving the cash to the criminals?

The Cornish superfast broadband should go through an open-tendering process with BT barred from taking part.

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Grenade

Bad day for EU haters

First the BT-Phorm news, now EU money financing British broadband. What's next? British citizens taking advantage of social security benefits such as healthcare in other EU countries? Oh no wait... that happens already!

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Unhappy

I'm not an EU hater

But I can't see the logic of the EU taking UK tax-payers money for the government's failure to prosecute BT/Phorm for snooping on us, then giving a big pile of cash to BT to enable them to extend their snooping network.

Investing in rural broadband is fine. Helping entrench a virtual monopoly for a company accused of invading its customers' privacy is madness.

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Anonymous Coward

@Red Bren

Of course you have a good point there. But I suppose the theory is that the money is invested to improve the lifes of the local population not to enrich BT shareholders. Also note that the EU commission beef is against the inadequacy of the UK laws on privacy, not specifically against BT.

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Pirate

What's stopping cable companies

Part of the reason BT has a "virtual monopoly" is that NTLVirginWest only bother to cable high density areas, as far as I can tell. I'd gladly sign up for cable if it was an option. I'd even dig my own trench up my drive. I'd even promise to rent a movie every month.

Presumably there was nothing stopping TeleMediaWestVirgin bidding for the EU money, other than the fact that there isn't enough profit in it?

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Happy

@Red Bren

But I can't see the logic of the EU taking UK tax-payers money for the government's failure to prosecute BT/Phorm for snooping on us, then giving a big pile of cash to BT to enable them to extend their snooping network.

Reasonable points. However the EU is a government and different parts have different budgets and collect money in different ways. You could say the same about the actions of the UK government in similar situations. ICO fines company for data loss while dept of Business issues them with a government grant.

Now *consider* the amount of cross referencing and data sharing (across *every* government dept) needed to ensure that *no* money needs to be sent out that is not already being collected by another department.

Perhaps you'd like a unified companies and persons database for *everyone* in the UK to simplify and speed up that cross referencing? Well that would be the argument, weather it worked (this would be another UK Gov mega IT project) would be another matter.

But they could always share the costs. Get the folk who operate the ANPR network to pay for a feed to help track every car driver in the UK at the same time perhaps.

All told I'm liking your plan more every minute.

What could go wrong?

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Troll

Yay

I’m scoffing. I think you’ll find the vast majority of homes in Cornwall already have electricity. There are potentially some out on the moors which do not but we’re not all running around wearing potato sacks shoving pitchforks at the nearest Englishman that we can find... I did say not “all” of us.

Broadband however is patchy in places, the last company I worked for suffered with a awful connection which amounted to about ½ a Mb i on the other hand get a nice steady 8Mb. Then again a few months ago I went with my partner to visits her grandmother in Croydon who can’t get broadband at all.

Given the choice between wearing a potato sack and wielding a pitchfork or living in Cryodon... i'll take my potato sack thanks.

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Grenade

I DEMAND...

...150Mbps interwebs directly to my brain! I demand that BT pay to install this, regardless of cost or viability, and go bust in the process! I then demand the government maintain the expensive infrastructure without paying a single penny more in line rental or taxation! I demand this within the next 48 hours! I refuse to pay any more than 14p per month for this uncapped, unmetered, unshaped service!

This is my RIGHT as a HUMAN BEAN.

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Unhappy

I'm waiting for the other boot to fall

How much per month?

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Cheap as really.

". for a per capita investment of only about £100."

Jesus I'd happily chip in £100 to get some decent broadband speeds around here. That's cheap as to most business which can loose that amount the second their connection goes flakey.

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Beware ISPs bearing statistics.

What's the "capita" this is "per"? Significant differences if it's based on population, area, premises, or number of currently installed lines.

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Boffin

Latin for dummies

You do know what the word 'capita' means (leaving aside it's use in company naming)? It's Latin for 'head', specifically in this context the living human head. Even in Cornwall, there is just one of those per human. [1]

Ergo, 'per capita' means per living human being. It doesn't measure areas or number of premises or any aspect of communications infrastructure.

I will allow that measuring the population of Cornwall is problematic, as pointed out above, since so many properties are second homes and hence much of the 'population' is transient; this contributes to Cornwall being the depressed economic area that it is.

[Note for Mebyon Kernow nuts: This is a joke. I *am* a native Cornishman. Are you?]

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Silver badge

What, no muscal jokes?

Where's the jokes about Priates in Penzance? Is this the very model of a modern Fibre Network?

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Coat

Take it....

Sally Davis has never been to Cornwall...

'Sally Davis, chief executive for BT Wholesale, said: "This will provide a blueprint for how we can bring next-generation broadband to rural areas ... The £132m project is one of the most ambitious in the world ... If Cornwall were considered a country it will be in the top five most connected nations by the end of 2014."'

Half the Cornish people I've met when I've gone on holiday down there like to think they're an independent country anyway!

How about some fibre love for those of us up the road in Devon?

Mine's the one with the cream tea in the pocket.

Rob

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I hear you...

"How about some fibre love for those of us up the road in Devon?"

I can almost literally throw stones over the border to Cornwall, I don't feel any richer or any better off than my neighbours in that direction. Sucks that for want of a few hundred yards there will be such a difference in internet access for the foreseeable future.

Still, thats the way the cookie crumbles and it could be worse.

Oh, and hello DCLUG buddy fancy seeing you here :]

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FAIL

Chaotic BT

No doubt BT will make the same p*sspoor job of managing this rollout, like they're making of Infinity.

I'm on a lovely 1.6Mbs connection, and the house behind me in the next street has access to Infinity, on our fiber enabled exchange (which is not on any BT plan or schedule for fiber upgrade)

We have a nice new green box at the end of our street, and a nice patch of new tarmac where they connected the fiber, but when I check on their website using my number, there's no suggestion we will ever have access to Infinity. Even if you call them directly they can't even offer a date in the future when we might have.

So Cornwall, don't expect too much from BT !!

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BT

I don't hink anyone EVER expects much from BT!

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Pint

What a load of whingers

Way to go Eclipse Internet

I live in rural Cornwall, very near to a decent exchange

I have to suffer a paltry 7.5mb Download & 447 kb upload.

I think my wire must be getting wet, it used to be 7.8mb

Beer 'cos, Cheers Eclipse

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Anonymous Coward

So where's the roll-out schedule then?

This press release and the euphoria surrounding it reads like "everyone in Cornwall will get superfast broadband in the next 2 or 3 years".

I seriously doubt that.

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£2000 per connection

I live in rural Scotland, there is a scheme here, max connection speed 1Mb/s for £25 per month, it is subsidised to the tune of £2000 per connection. The scheme uses microwave links. There is a fibre optic cable going into our local exchange, but BT wont upgrade the exchange because we've got the shit we dont want.

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Gold badge
Pint

Spare a thought for Suffolk

It's where "Straw dogs," was set. About a good advertisement for Suffolk as "Deliverance" was for Arkansas.

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title

en again a few months ago I went with my partner to visits her grandmother in Croydon who can’t get broadband at all.<

Croydon not only has broadband, Telewest (cable company) used to have head office there. In fact, that whole area was one of the first places to have cable laid in the country.

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Broadband

When I lived in Cornwall there was a mate of mine lived within a fairly short distance of both Poldhu Cove (Marconi's transatlantic transmission) and Goonhilly (BT's massive satellite station). He could only get 33k - but they upped it to 56 just before I left !

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WTF?

Same timescale as national Fibre-optic links?

So, we're talking about sometime in the next 10 years on a sliding scale?

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