back to article Broadband minister's fibre cabinet gripe snub sparks revolt

City of Westminster councillors are outraged by the new broadband minister's decision to cut red tape and hasten the arrival of on-street fibre-optic cable cabinets. The bureaucracy-slashing move means telcos can install faster broadband connections without approval from local councils, which can prevent the placing of large …

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  1. Ol'Peculier
    Thumb Up

    6 feet

    Where does that figure come from? The ones we have here (Scarborough) are only a little higher - and narrower - than the analogue boxes.

    1. dotdavid
      Stop

      Re: 6 feet

      They're all at least six feet high, have been shown to cause cancer in children who play nearby, provide internet access to paedophiles and thousands of illegal immigrants install them every year.

      1. andreas koch
        Coat

        @dotdavid - Re: 6 feet

        >. . .

        thousands of illegal immigrants

        . . .<

        You're apparently right, it mentions them here:

        > . . .

        poles and wires festooning their streets

        . . .<

        Question is: where do wires come from? Wirland?

        Disclaimer: I haven't installed a single broadband box since I immigrated. Does that make me OK, or do I need my coat . . .

        ;-)

      2. oldredlion
        Big Brother

        Re: 6 feet

        These boxes might seem nice and smart but given the chance they'd kill you and everyone you care about.

      3. leexgx
        Thumb Up

        Re: 6 feet

        nice post dotdavid

      4. Glenn Amspaugh

        Re: 6 feet

        And are covered in hair and smell like a wookie's armpit?

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Seriously

    Who gives a fuck if a new green box starts appearing on our streets as part of a new infrastructure drive?

    Seriously, who?

    I'm not talking about councillors or local authority planning department employees, who have a vested interest in protecting their little empires.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Seriously

      Exactly.

      If I were BT, I would start with placing one outside Philippa Roe's house. Even if the street did not need one :)

      1. Marty

        Re: Seriously

        I would site two of them outside her house.....

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Seriously

      This is what I don't understand....

      Anyone can park their car in the same street no matter what style or colour... ugly people are welcome to walk along it... but a stationary dark green box is a no-no... it's objecting just for the sake of objecting, these people need to get a hobby!

      1. ArmanX
        Coat

        Re: Seriously

        Remember, these are the same people who complain about "eyesore" cellular antennas, in the same breath as complaining about their lack of signal... no one said they were all that bright.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Seriously

        "it's objecting just for the sake of objecting, these people need to get a hobby!"

        They should be named and shamed amost the neighbourhood.

        They would not complain half as much if they knew we knew who they were!

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Seriously

        Um, I think you'd be singing a different tune if there was one outside your house, particularly if it was restricting access to your land or obstructing a lovely view, and reducing the value of your property.

        Like the Local Government Association said, planning regulation is there for a reason.

        Then again fish don't buy homes or use broadband, so what business have you weighing into this matter anyway?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Seriously

          "Um, I think you'd be singing a different tune if there was one outside your house, particularly if it was restricting access to your land or obstructing a lovely view, and reducing the value of your property."

          Is that what you want? Cos that's what'll 'appen!?!?!?!

          Please....

          1. Danny 14 Silver badge

            Re: Seriously

            The new boxes ARE audible on a quiet street on a warm afternoon. When it is warm the fans make as much noise as the birds do in trees. It is a definite high pitched fan hum too. There is one outside my place of work you see and I walk along a parallel path between buildings and can hear it when I pass the wall. Wouldnt be too happy if that was parked outside my garden.

            1. This post has been deleted by its author

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Seriously

            I have f**king big telephone pole outside of my house, ruining the view and restricting access to my land (seriously, have to come in to park at an angle and reverse out carefully otherwise I'm in danger of losing a wing mirror). So what?

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Seriously

              Same here only it's a lamp-post. These people really need to get some perspective. It's not like these boxes are going to be sited on green belt land or in nature reserves they are only being placed in residential areas i.e. places that have already been developed by ripping up fields and replacing them with bricks and mortar.

              1. Vic

                Re: Seriously

                > i.e. places that have already been developed by ripping up fields

                In that case, there should be no difficulty getting through the standard Planning process.

                I dislike NIMBYism as much as the next guy, but this widespread removal of residents' rights is extremely worrisome...

                Vic.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Seriously

          "Then again fish don't buy homes or use broadband, so what business have you weighing into this matter anyway?"

          WTF are you on? what have fish got to do with any of your nonsense?

          actually, it doesn’t bother me that there is one outside my house. so long as it doesn’t block my driveway. I planted some large bushy plants (cant remember the name of it, the missus knows) my side of the wall to obscure it. and offering some birds a place to nest with some added shelter !!! I think it would be a worse view if it was outside the house across the road, but he is such a miserable twat, I would take pleasure at it pissing him off.....

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            @ AC 1623

            The last post in the thread at the time, that I was writing in response to - the fella's name is "iamafish".

      4. John McCallum
        Devil

        Re: Seriously

        They have a hobby it's called objecting(to everything and anything).

    3. I. Aproveofitspendingonspecificprojects

      Real: Seriously

      Not me.

      I know the work around:

      By old scrap car. > Leave keys in ignition. > Have car stolen in middle of night. > Have crash.... oops ...I mean > someone else have crash.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Work-around

        You might think have a cunning plan but unfortunately you fail to spell the word 'buy', which somewhat damages your credibility.

  3. Pete 2 Silver badge

    Complaining is their greatest pleasure

    Presumably the same (sorts of) people got used to streetlights, TV aerials and motor vehicles when they started to appear. They'll get used to broadband cabinets too.

    To paraphrase Robert Kennedy: Twenty percent of the people will be against anything

    Let 'em moan.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Idiots

      Well done to all the above posters in demonstrating that they are incapable of any sort of rational reasoning or of considering others.

      I'm sure you wouldn't mind if someone were to come round and build a 12ft brick wall around the perimeter of your home, then again you probably didn't pay for it and don't give a crap anyway.

      Planning regulations are there for a reason. The Local Government Association is just asking that the prevailing rules continue to be followed rather than recklessly abandoning them in favour of reducing costs for the telcos who already have thickly-lined pockets.

      They are not saying "thou shalt not have broadband" - only asking that there is some thought and consideration put into their location, as per the existing, perfectly-adequate provisions for such things.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Idiots

        "They are not saying "thou shalt not have broadband" - only asking that there is some thought and consideration put into their location, as per the existing, perfectly-adequate provisions for such things."

        Don't be so naive, It's more likely that they are just concerned about the validity of their authority being weakened by such a "let's just get it done" approach by the Government. Their motives are political not moral.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Idiots

        "Well done to all the above posters in demonstrating that they are incapable of any sort of rational reasoning or of considering others."

        so the people complaining about the placing of a box outside their home are thinking rational or in consideration of others when fast broadband is abandoned in the area because its just too much trouble for the telco's

        "I'm sure you wouldn't mind if someone were to come round and build a 12ft brick wall around the perimeter of your home, then again you probably didn't pay for it and don't give a crap anyway."

        what a nasty little mind you have.. I seriously would be bothered if someone built a12ft brick wall around my home but are you implying that the only people interested in fast broadband or who are that bothered about how a cabinet looks are low income families in social housing claiming benifits and selling drugs? Well how elitist of you. you think you are better than everyone else just because you live in tree-lined suburbia that most people can only afford to live in because they inherited it from daddy, where the big issues of the days is that him at number 30 has a new satellite dish and hasn’t had it painted to blend in with the brickwork, or her that lives at number 18 needs to get the gate painted and some oil on it because it squeaks when her visitor leaves at 2am, or heaven forbid a mixed race family move in!!!!

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Scumbag

          I work hard to pay for my home and I would be upset if it were devalued. Interesting how you jump to conclusions but I have never had any inheritance nor any other kind of handout. I would also speculate that other things you might think would be equally erroneous.

          I would feel the same way whether I lived in the modest suburb I do, in the centre of town where I used to live or anywhere else.

          The only way I can imagine people not caring about their neighbourhood is if they don't contribute. There are a lot of people who get given everything and most of them do not contribute in any way to society. I see them every day (even in "tree-lined suburbia") and I declare it wrong that they are entitled to the same or better quality of life than me, and I'm paying for it.

          I didn't mention drugs but it's telling that you brought the topic up. From your comment it sounds like you live in a less pleasant environment and evidently you are bitter about this. So why don't you get off your arse and pay your own way? Maybe then you would understand why people with brains want to protect their most significant and tangible investment.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Scumbag

            "I work hard to pay for my home and I would be upset if it were devalued"

            same here. I work very hard for my home and its contents and I would be upset if it were devalued. But I can honestly say that the majority of homes would not be devalued by anything near significant by the placing of a FTC cabinet adjacent to it. Facts are properties have have lost value of late by way of a whole host of things least of them will be roll out of new infrastructure to improve comms in the local area. When I moved to my current home, Availability of fast broadband and distance from the exchange was taken into account. Fact is, I would be prepared to pay more for a home if fast broadband was available than an identical property with crappy internet. So in some ways not having these cabs could increase property prices.

            "Interesting how you jump to conclusions"

            All I did was jumped to a different set of conclusions and generalisations than you did....

            The only way I can imagine people not caring about their neighbourhood is if they don't contribute. There are a lot of people who get given everything and most of them do not contribute in any way to society. I see them every day (even in "tree-lined suburbia") and I declare it wrong that they are entitled to the same or better quality of life than me, and I'm paying for it.

            its what you call social responsibility. Many people through no fault of their own are entitled to have things paid for them by the state. Most of them through no fault of their own. It does not bother me that part of the 40% I pay in income tax goes to help the guy down the road who cant walk properly, get around in a car paid for with the money he gets handed to by way of a DLA payment. It does not bother me that part of my 40% of my earnings goes to help the family down the next street who by no fault of their own have a child that is so disabled that neither of the parents can work full time. It really doesn’t bother me that they are getting the same quality of life as me.

            "I didn't mention drugs but it's telling that you brought the topic up. From your comment it sounds like you live in a less pleasant environment and evidently you are bitter about this. So why don't you get off your arse and pay your own way? Maybe then you would understand why people with brains want to protect their most significant and tangible investment."

            No matter where you live there will be drugs. don’t kid yourself that just because you live in a "nice area" there are no drugs. And I am happy where all my homes are. I pay my way in life, I pay more than most do in ways of social responsibility. And for the record, my primary residence is not my "most significant and tangible investment", I have cars that cost more than the average cost of a house in the uk... and every penny has come from getting off my arse....

  4. Ross K Silver badge
    Facepalm

    Yawn. First World Problems...

    So Jeremy and Jemima Nimby don't like street cabinets? Fsck them, they should be be thankful they're in the tiny number of people on this planet with access to broadband.

    I'm sure the cabinets can be disguised as other things, as telcos did with mobile phone masts.

    Like an ethical coffee stall perhaps? A refuge for transgender midgets?

    Or maybe I'll come round in the night and crudely spray a hairy erect phallus on every cabinet I find.

    1. Code Monkey

      Re: Yawn. First World Problems...

      You mean my local refuge for transgender midgets is just a scam? Just another mobile phone mast?

      I don't know who to trust any more.

      1. Ross K Silver badge

        Re: Yawn. First World Problems...

        You mean my local refuge for transgender midgets is just a scam? Just another mobile phone mast?

        'Fraid so. Probably a front for the Albanian mafia or something...

        If I was you I'd move house.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Yawn. First World Problems...

      Given that it's Westminster, better not disguise them as an anti-war protester's tent. Instead, if they're made to look like a broken BT phone-box plastered with prostitutes' calling cards, they should get past the planning committee

    3. Anonymous Coward 15

      "crudely spray a hairy erect phallus"

      B3tan, by any chance?

      1. Ross K Silver badge

        Re: "crudely spray a hairy erect phallus"

        B3tan, by any chance?

        No. Just a childish passive agressive.

        Oh wait, is that the same thing?

  5. Stuart 22

    Will they think about the hinges

    The GPO boxes were made of cast iron built to withstand a nuclear blast

    The BT boxes were made of sheet metal to withstand the rain

    The Virgin boxes were made of disposal panels ... except I can't recall what used the hang on the hinges ...

    It would be nice if all street furniture could be mandated to designed to look good and not fall to bits the first time a kids football hits it. A choice in shape and colour would be nice too. The council could choose that. Apart from ensuring they don't obstruct then that's it for the council. Bunging £50 to the owner of any adjoining property would silence 99% of objections. Except from folks who would like it outside their property instead ...

    1. Synonymous Howard

      Re: Will they think about the hinges

      Gone are the days of Victorian over-engineered cast iron masterpieces (tis a shame). I'd be very happy to have a miniature beam engine pumping the water at the end of the street.

      You would wonder if these same nimbys would moan if the iconic red phone boxes or pillar boxes were being removed from their leafy suburbs? (although I would moan if they painted the nearby ones that ghastly gold regardless of whether someone peddled faster in an oval or threw a metal plate further than some others).

      Maybe if they got Johnny Ive to design them we'd all be happier?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Will they think about the hinges

        "Maybe if they got Johnny Ive to design them we'd all be happier?"

        No! The majority of us would Tisk.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        @ Howard

        * PEDALLED

        1. Vic
          Joke

          Re: @ Howard

          > * PEDALLED

          Hactually, the OP might have been closer to the truth with "peddled"...

          Vic.

    2. Elmer Phud Silver badge

      Re: Will they think about the hinges

      I remember when the open season was declared on cable TV - the amount of duplicated road digging and empty green boxes was a tad over the top.

      Personally I wouldn't mind one outside my place though - I'm FTTC with an OH feed.

  6. Shaun 1

    I agree with the residents of Westminster

    They shouldn't have their streets filled with unsightly High Speed Internet cabinets, they should be filling the streets of MY local area instead!

    1. nematoad Silver badge
      Unhappy

      Re: I agree with the residents of Westminster

      I agree entirely.

      I'd love to have one of these cabinets outside my house if it meant that I could get better than the 300 KB/sec I'm currently being offered.

      I think that there is a clue in Roe's remark:

      "She added that the City of Westminster is able to offer businesses, residents and tourists a decent broadband connection via various means including O2's "free" Wi-Fi zones in parts of the West End,"

      Sort of "Cabinets we don't need no steenkin cabinets! And sod the rest of you who do."

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I understand why Kensington & Chelsea Council rejected 96 (out of 108) of the BT proposals for new cabinets - wouldn't want anything spoling the view of endless parked 4x4s, bins outside every house, parking meters...

  8. Pen-y-gors Silver badge

    How difficult is it...

    To design a series of slip-on covers for standard cabinets in a variety of tasteful designs, to fit every locality - tudorbethan, bauhaus, victorian gothic etc. Perhaps something that local councils or residents associations could buy if they don't like the standard green ones. Could be a nice little earner for someone. (who do I patent the idea with?)

    1. Ross K Silver badge

      Re: How difficult is it...

      Other (sensible) countries put a vinyl wrap on the cabinets to blend with their surroundings.

      Obviously this could never happen in the UK as someone would bang into the box, lose a tooth and sue somebody. Then all cabinets would have to be painted fluorescent green to ensure all future idiots could see said cabinet and give it a wide berth.

      1. Benny

        Re: How difficult is it...

        Didn't people do that when Sky dishes first arrived? I remember seeing brick covers on a Sky dish and totally not noticing it, no-sireee!

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Seriously?

    We have a fully fibred-up BT exchange a mile up the road, but because the powers-that-be cabled up our (mid-2000s-built) street with what I can only assume was wet string, we're lucky to squeak 2Mbps on our broadband on a good day with a following wind, whilst paying the same for the privilege as someone with ten times the bandwidth a few streets away.

    If it were purely down to me*, I'd agree to hosting one of these cable-boxes in our (tiny) front garden, painted day-glo yellow with a Banksy original on the front, if it only meant we and our neighbours (I'm community-minded, me) could finally get the BT Infinity service the local exchange is apparently fully capable of.

    In the meantime, I'll just have to wait until either BT get their fingers out (or Virgin Media beats them to it), or the local NIMBYs emigrate, and gamely put up with my brother bragging about how incredible his 20-times-faster Virgin broadband is, and I really should get it, oh no, you can't, ho ho :-(

    * But sadly it's not - my wife is a bit more aesthetically-minded than my more utilitarian self...

    1. David_H
      Thumb Up

      Re: Seriously?

      I'm a Parish Councillor, and I can assure you that in my rural parish we use common sense. We would look at path obstruction, noise and any roadway line-of-sight issues it might bring. If any one of those was a problem we would suggest a slight move (probably only a few feet). Job done!

      Bring it on I say as we have (wet) paper insulated lines in my village.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Seriously?

        We could do with a few more councillors like you around here :-)

        1. Intractable Potsherd

          Re: Seriously?

          So stand for election!

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The trouble is this seems to be an overreaction to perceived NIMBYism that can easily go too far the other way. (It's almost a Daily Mail style reaction to an apparent Daily Mail problem.)

    Most of the time, replacing an old style with a new style won't cause a problem, but there are cases when planning law can actually protect people's quality of life.

    They wanted to swap an old one for a new on a street near me. The old one was at 45 degrees across the corner where the two streets met. Because the new one was larger, instead of hugging the wall it would have stuck out into the pavent, leaving insuficient pace to get a wheelchair or buggy past. And this was beside a nunnery that cared for the elderly and infirm, and on the same street as a maternity hospital.

    The council got them to move it round the corner - about 6 feet. You see, not every complaint is pure NIMBYism.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Sounds like it to me.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        @ AC

        You may not be intelligent enough to care about anybody else but that does not mean you should be allowed to do whatever you please.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        @ "Sounds like it to me."

        You probably don't appreciate that NIMBY stands for Not In My Back Yard. As the cabinet ended up in exactly the same 'back yard' as originally proposed, that's clearly not the issue here - it was a case of a community looking out for each other, rather than trying to selfishly protect property prices.

        At least I hope that's the reason for your comment. Of course you could just think that BT saving a few quid and getting your 24mbps broadband a week or two earlier is more important than the quality of life of those less fortunate than yourself. Which is also known as being a [censored].

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "Sounds like it to me."

        I think you've just proved the original AC's point. Planning permission is needed to protect other people from uncaring morons like you.

  11. Robert Cunningham

    Lets give westminster council something to really do for a living.

    Since Westminster (bubble) council has not much serious business on its hands, can we not site an incineration plant or new breed of nuclear reactor there ?

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    STUFF THE NIMBY's!

    Bring Fibre to my street now! The far too posh to be worthwhile shoudl be shunned and roll out broadband to those wnat/need it.

    The NIMBY's can stay stuck with dial up.

    1. Richard Morris
      Stop

      RE: STUFF THE NIMBY's!

      I think you forgot to put the DACS on their line too!

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: RE: STUFF THE NIMBY's!

        What item that belongs to the NIMBY are you instructing us to stuff?

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Most of Westminster is a dump, from what I've seen. This isn't Kensington & Chelsea we're talking about.

    The main problem with these cabinets, IME, is that they frequently get vandalised either by graffiti or by being ripped open. Then, I'd agree, they become unsightly.

    What do these people do if someone in their street buys a yellow car?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      An inconspicuous green cabinet is nothing compared to the rubbish, freakXfreaks’, the usual detritus and the scruffs who live on the street.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        @ Obviously a fool

        If the area in which you live is really so disgusting, why don't you move to somewhere nicer?

  14. Alain Moran

    Simple solution

    Dig up their roads and bury the boxes ... not only will this require their street to be closed for a week or so while a hole big enough can be dug so that engineers will have access, but will also hide the boxes and allow the telco's to add a surcharge to their bills to pay for the extra work.

    No doubt when they realise that it will not only inconvenience them but also put them out of pocket then they may change their tune ;)

    1. KroSha
      Devil

      Re: Simple solution

      Nice, but they should write to every person that connects to that box and inform them that, because of the objection raised by Mr. Dawlish at no.7, their bill will be an extra £15 per month forever.

      See how many objections they get then!

  15. Marty

    work in partnership.... dont make me laugh.....

    "It is more important that councils work in partnership with broadband companies to locate infrastructure sensibly."

    It depends on your standpoint, For the broadband company, ascetics is of least concern, (unless apple decide to go into broadband) whereas its the home owners who object, and as they vote for the councilors, they take up the battle.

    The thing is, its all about compromise. as far as the home owners are concerned, they will compromise as long as the result is not outside their house, then they have to compromise with the next door neighbour.....

    as its not actually installed on the residents property then unless its blocking access to their property then they can just STFU.

    The best way forward is to canvas the local area of where the cabinet CAN be placed to see if they can find someone that will not object to it outside their house. Even go to the point of offering free or discounted Broadband to the current occupant. If they cant find a willing resident, then the site that has the least % of footprint to pavement ratio should be used.. Next thing is that it needs to be sited in such away that it does not cause an obstruction to pedestrians. If BT can do this autonomously then let them get on with it.

  16. John McCallum

    "If they cant find a willing resident, then the site that has the least % of footprint to pavement ratio should be used.. "I think that is what these councils want but the percentage is 0%,and the only way to do that is to recess them in to a wall Expensive!

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    NIMBY ALERT

    I have a green box right outside my house. do I give a shit and cry like a bitch to my MP?

    Nope - I'm blessed with a cracking 40/10 connection thats rock solid as the lines SNR is cracking and had no downtime or slowdown since install.

    green boxes for everyone!!! :)

  18. James 100

    In my area, the new Infinity cabinet is almost identical to the old analogue one 20 feet away that it connects to, apart from having fresher paint (obviously) and pointy rather than rounded corners (Apple patent?), plus the little vent grilles. (I think the locking mechanism's different too, but I've seen both styles on the analogue patch cabinets too.)

    For goodness' sake, BT has been installing virtually identical cabinets across the UK for decades now for analogue service, Virgin installed bigger but very similar ones at the end of my street years ago for cable. In fact, by definition these FTTC cabinets are being installed near to and connected to existing green street cabinets - do these councils want those removed too, depriving their subjects of phone service?!

  19. David 45

    You want speed, already?

    Ah yes. Typical NIMBY. They all want speed but don't want the gear that provides it or to bear the cost of alternative locations, like an underground cable joint-box, which would be my suggestion. Slap a surcharge on these folk, if they want super-fast broadband.

  20. Andrew Jones 2

    "Residents expect councils to protect their homes and make neighbourhoods nice places to live, and planning regulations exist to do just that. The drive to meet broadband targets shouldn't force poorly thought out knee-jerk measures that spoil local environments and needlessly damage roads. Government needs to encourage providers to work together to make better use of existing ducts and poles, rather than duplicating infrastructure."

    Yes... because the existing regulations are not slowing down the roll out at all are they.....

    Interestingly - I see some talk that having a box outside your house can lower your house price - but I tend to find that having availability to high speed broadband these days - actually increases the house price. It's like any other local amenity - a house that does not have access to electricity or gas or water - lowers it's market value. While high speed and in fact just broadband in general is not as far as I am aware classed as an amenity - it does in fact have a bearing on the house value.

  21. JaitcH
    WTF?

    Broadband Wiring Can be Simpler than Cable TV

    North America puts it channel selection in equipment within a house whilst many European systems put the channel switching systems outside on the street.

    Fibre optic cable is simply the conduit through which signals flow and the controlling equipment is within the 'exchange' or switch building.

    This means very infrequent access is required to broadband fibre cable and therefore simple 'holes in the ground' are quite adequate.

    A perfectly acceptable underground chamber can be seen at: < http://www.areco.co.uk/images/access-boxes.jpg >.

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