something is amiss here....
I'm wondering if there is something we're not being told in the articles that are written about this situation. Did Birmingham council perhaps mislead Virgin into thinking it would spend it's £10,000,000 with Virgin, in order for them to construct the infrastructure in the Birmingham area, in order to get their co-operation and expertise in a field that they would otherwise know nothing about, then stab them in the back by deciding to do it all on their own?
I'm with Virgin and BT here. BT was privatised because of the simple fact that governments are CRAP at running services like this. Look at the DWP and the NHS for prime examples of just how badly governments run public services, far better for it to be run by a private company that has an interest in keeping it's customers happy and improving services.
It's probably worth pointing out here, that I left Virgin Media years ago and will never use them again, because the exit service I received, was absolutely dire. Also, I left BT nearly a year ago in favor of Sky, because I was getting 2 - 4Mbps max and I knew my line was capable of 16Mbps, which I now get on Sky.
As you can see, I'm no fan of either of these companies, but a government, local or national, building, managing and running the services related to this kind of infrastructure, is a recipe for disaster, where they'll end up having to sell the whole thing off to VM or BT at some point anyway, likely at a MASSIVE loss to the taxpayer.