back to article Two more counties to get gov-funded bumpkin broadband from... guess?

BT won two more government-subsidised contracts to rollout rural broadband on Monday when it scooped up deals in Oxfordshire and Worcestershire. The telco giant will spend £11m in Oxfordshire installing fibre-to-the-cabinet technology; the local council will cough up £10m and a further £4m will come from the state. The work …

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  1. Tom 7 Silver badge

    The telco giant will spend £11m in Oxfordshire

    doing something it should have done years ago and then coming back cap in hand to get some money for another fibre.. or two.

    1. JetSetJim Silver badge
      Black Helicopters

      Re: The telco giant will spend £11m in Oxfordshire

      Yeah, but the PM's constituency wasn't there until recently.

      1. HollyHopDrive

        Re: The telco giant will spend £11m in Oxfordshire

        I fail to understand how it can be a fair bidding process when only one supplier is bidding. Common sense says your rules are too strict and you should look at changing the tendering rules in order to solicit more applications. It can only help keep costs down and speed up the roll out.

        BT know they are the only supplier so have no need to compete - as long as they clearly don't take the piss too badly the gov will have to just stump up.

        What I'd like to see is that all these government paid for bits are forced to be unbundled to competitors AT TRUE COST. i.e. BT don't get to control them or set the prices, they make their money on the setup. Thats it, after that they belong to the UK (not BT). Any profit from these points (i.e. the wholesale markup) returned back to the GOV. That way it becomes a loan not a BT subsidy.

        I'd also like to know what options are open for small communications companies have to get in on the gig. Yes, they probably couldn't do a whole county, but they probably could manage 200 or so cabinets. Bet they can't even tender.

  2. xyz

    Is this what they mean....

    >>Fujitsu pulled out of the race for the money earlier this year after complaining of restrictive "conditions" around the process.

    Fujitsu: Can we tender for the contract?

    Gov: The conditions state your company name must start with a "B" and end in a "T"?

    Fujitsu: We'll set up a company called "BET"

    Gov: Oh and no characters inbetween.

    Fjitsu: Bugger.

  3. Ragarath

    Just biding their time.

    For example my exchange (in Town upgraded a while ago) my cabinet 3 miles outside town, on BT's upgrade for March this year.

    March comes we get our BDUK funds for the County, the date slips. I contact the nga email for finsing out about these things. They come back with problems supplying power to the cabinet. Now note their is a traffic light right next to the darn cabinet.

    Power issues my arse, all BT saw was they now have funds we don't need to spend our own money. This is why they have not spent the money they said they would.

    The government should have said to them spend your £1 Billion and then we will start making funds available.

  4. Duncan Carter

    Re-nationalise BT...

    Then we can do away with the ridiculous levels of committees involved in this, and BT might be able to get on with the job...

    1. John 48
      Facepalm

      Re: Re-nationalise BT...

      Yes, cos it used to work so well when it was state owned before...

      Instead of roll out of 24Mb/sec services we would be campaigning for V90 support.

      1. Michael B.

        Re: Re-nationalise BT...

        You are mistaken the real change was the introduction of the NTE5 wall socket and the introduction of digital exchanges. The development and implementation of both started under the nationalised BT.

        BT were forced to offer local loop unbundling because an EU directive and they were subsequently forced to create Openreach to ensure that they did actually offer equal access to the local network.

        They were also pretty slow in getting ADSL services out to the masses. ( I remember them still pimping Home Highway (ISDN) hard even when ADSL services were available and even then their initial ADSL speeds were pretty miserly.)

        I really don't buy this private BT is better as it seems that they are frequently forced to do the right thing by government time and time again.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Re-nationalise BT...

          "The development and implementation of both started under the nationalised BT." This seems surely to be an incomplete sentence. I think you probably meant to add '...when they started copying the kit of other already privatised countries, just making minor changes to mess up compatibility"

        2. Syntax Error
          Meh

          Re: Re-nationalise BT...

          Remedy is not a private company. Remedy describes itself as a "hybrid company".

          Remedy is and always has been a government agency.

          The selling of shares was thatcherism. The Government always pulls Remedy's strings..... and grabs its data.

        3. Tom 13

          Re: Re-nationalise BT...

          Private companies are companies that face competition. Being a 'Merkin I'm not well informed of the particulars with regard to BT, but it sounds to me like what you have there is an off-book government operation with private colored lipstick smeared all over the pig. So you have the worst of all possible worlds, but not something that is actually private.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Re-nationalise BT...

      Yeah because BT are lovely and didn't try to get a hyperlink patent applied to the WWW.

    3. This post has been deleted by its author

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Re-nationalise BT...

      Re-nationalise BT? That would mean an end to competition leaving only one supplier.

      If you want to live that particular dream, have a look at the glorious sunlit uplands of Hull, with it's one monopoly operator

      1. AndrueC Silver badge
        Thumb Down

        Re: Re-nationalise BT...

        And does anyone trust our government with complete control of the telecoms infrastructure? They don't exactly have a stellar record when it comes to protecting our privacy and right to personal freedom. At least now BT has commercial reasons for objecting to some of the things they want to do.

  5. knarf
    Thumb Down

    oh Great more money to the Rich parts of the country

    Shouldn't fibre be rolled to to the depressed North to encourage growth rather than creating a greater wealth gravity well in the place where all the wealth already is.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: oh Great more money to the Rich parts of the country

      b4rn

      The government don't care about the people, only the money.

  6. Wanda Lust

    Sky

    So why isn't Sky having a go at this? They're flaffing on about wanting unfettered acccess to BT's cabs for their own FTTC and backhaul.

    I guess the subject mustn't have come up at one of those infamous government-industry country suppers.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Sky

      Because they want BT to install the interduct first.

  7. envmod

    Yay BT!

    Yay!

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Why?

    Why throw money at monopolistic incompetents such as BT when the likes of b4rn seem like a much better option.

    Oh wait, the latter don't buy opera tickets or dinners and might actually empower the people.

    Can't possibly have that.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Why?

      More like a combination of the sheer amount of govt paperwork being enough to sink a small outfit like that, and them not having the experience, skill or staff/contractors to take on what are in some cases very big contracts.

  9. Robert E A Harvey

    Bumpkin?

    Oxford bloody shire?

    Where Clarkson lives? And Cameron?

    That's not Bumpkin territory, that's Knobshire.

    Bumpkins live in Lincolnshire, Norfolk, Somerset. (no, not Devon. That's full of UCTs as well)

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Bumpkin?

      But of course. The poor must fund the rich. This is the way of the world. Only a terrorist paedo would disagree.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Bumpkin?

      Have you seen parts of Oxford? Not 5 miles from those gleaming spires are some pretty awful council estates.

      Like every county there are good bits and bad bits.

      I live in a 'bad' bit of Hampshire. Lots of ex Council houses so it's hardly 'Knobshire' yet we have FTTC. The nice thing for me is that most people around here are on Virgin so my FTTC link is pretty fast.

      Strangely enough, tw miles down the road is our local 'Knob Hill'. They have abysmal broadbad speeds.

      Isn't real life strange?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Bumpkin?

        "Have you seen parts of Oxford?"

        So what? Have you seen the North? And no, I don't me feckin' Manchester. I am actual NORTH.

        But as ever, the rich South keeps everything to itself and then acts like it somehow deserve it.

        1. Mycho Silver badge

          Re: Bumpkin?

          The actual North? You mean places like Harrogate?

          1. This post has been deleted by its author

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Bumpkin?

        "I live in a 'bad' bit of Hampshire. Lots of ex Council houses so it's hardly 'Knobshire' yet we have FTTC. The nice thing for me is that most people around here are on Virgin so my FTTC link is pretty fast.

        Strangely enough, tw miles down the road is our local 'Knob Hill'. They have abysmal broadbad speeds."

        Thing is, your average council estate is brilliant for FTTC/cable. Loads of houses, all close together, all built when cable cos had money to build a network and usually with some meaty BT cabs.

        Your average "well to do" area has fewer actual houses, all much further apart and usually fed overhead with no cabs...

  10. cs94njw

    Hang on, isn't 24 Mbps viable using ADSL2+?

    I'd be expecting a lot more from FTTC, surely?!

    1. RonWheeler
      Windows

      Only in theory

      In reality, most poeple on copper are lucky to see barely half that.

      (Sent from my 60 meg Virgin cable connection).

      1. knarf

        Re: Only in theory

        I'm on Copper (called "fibre" when I upgraded) whith a telegraph pole and a cable across the garden and I get 40Mb.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Getting that to every farmhouse in a rural area is a challenge in itself.

  11. Syntax Error

    It starts with a B and sorta rhymes with graffiti

    You do mean Remedy.

    1. Throatwobbler Mangrove

      no, no, no

      they mean banoffee.

  12. Nuke

    Rural != !London

    FTFA :- "BT won .. contracts to rollout rural broadband .,. in Oxfordshire and Worcestershire. .... mostly feeding high-speed fibre to street-side cabinets"

    If there is a street, it isn't rural. Only towns have streets; rural areas have roads and lanes.

    What they really mean by "rural " is "non-London". I grew up in Lonon and used to assume that anywhere else in Britain looked like those pictures in "Country Life" calendars. Not so. There are plenty of over-crowded shit holes outside London that could not be called "rural" by any stretch of the imagination, including in Oxfordshire and Worcestershire.

    In fact there are not many places in lowland Britain that can properly be called rural anymore. As it happens I live in one (forest and fields all round me), and am not expecting fibre anytime; I'm not asking for it either - I'd move back to the city if I wanted it that badly.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Rural != !London

      Most of the people I know would be happy with a stable 4-6Mbit (enough for iPlayer SD) but due to rural long lines that's impossible with current setups.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Fantastic, now do Rotherhithe

    It's way out in Zone 2, so 3mbps is what you'd expect, right?

    This ends my self-interested rant.

  14. Scott Wheeler

    Why do you always refer to anyone living outside the Great Wen as a bumpkin? Were you frightened by a cow-pat at an impresionable age?

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