Our Member of Parliament for Tiverton and Honiton, Neil Parish, today chaired a meeting, hosted by the Secretary of Trinity Broadband, Rod Boyce, at Fields Afar in Rousdon.
Connecting Devon and Somerset was represented Keri Denton, Head of Economy and Enterprise at Devon County Council, and Phil Roberts, Programme Manager CDS. Also attending were Cllr Andrew Leadbetter, Cabinet Member for Economy and Growth on DCC, and Cllr ian Thomas, Cabinet Member for Finance at EDDC, Trinity Ward member and Chairman of Trinity Broadband.
Discussions covered many subjects related to the delivery of Superfast Broadband to the area around Rousdon and across the whole of Trinity Ward. Phase One of the BDUK/CDS scheme to bring superfast broadband, awarded to BT, has left very large areas of the Trinity Ward with little or no improvement.
BT's solution to take fibre to the cabinet and then rely on the existing copper network to supply premises has resulted in 41 homes of the 121 (more that 33%) of properties connected to the Seaton exchange with no access to superfast broadband despite the very considerable taxpayers' subsidy. Yet in central government figures and BT performance within the contract, all are considered within the 121 "passed" and as such falsely able to receive a superfast broadband service.
After six years of campaigning it appears that BT has little interest in improving our situation. The best offered is to provide a partial solution covering the area to the west of the Rousdon Estate which would still leave some with download speeds of 0.1 mbps, and that only after those connected contribute £30,000.
In an email of July 2015 to Cllr Leadbetter, Paul Coles, SW Manager of BT, agreed that a realignment of phone lines to Lyme Regis PCP 11 cabinet (Shubbery, Rousdon) might be possible. This could potentially bring superfast speeds to those to both the west (Seaton connections in Rousdon and Dowlands) and east (Charton & Whitlands) of Rousdon, as it is served by the Lyme Regis exchange and would mean much shorter copper line runs beyond the cabinet.
This was suggested to be available, providing residents agreed to having their phone lines switched to the Lyme Regis exchange where necessary, with a new phone number and that all their ISP's (internet service providers) agreed. However, BT has shown no inclination to carry this out, which would have provide greatly improved broadboand speeds for those connected to the Seaton cabinet and those properties around Charton and Pinhay, currently connected to the Sidmouth Road Lyme PCP1 cabinet which is within a few hundred yards of the Lyme Regis exchange.
Our meeting agreed that cabinet realignment should be pursued, with the "greatest vigour", by both CDS and our Member of Parliament. Neil Parish confirmed that he would take this issue up directly with Bill Murphy, Managing Director Next Generation Access at BT. We await a response to his efforts.
CDS (Connecting Devon and Somerset) is aware that, of the five providers under the voucher scheme, only satellite is currently available to our area. This is generally agreed to be the least satisfactory solution. Trinity Broadband Group has already made direct approaches to two potential suppliers to our area, but both have declined. Connecting Devon and Somerset agreed to work toward increasing the list of providers and supporting our efforts to directly engage potential alternate suppliers.
The voucher scheme from CDS (click here) is now available. The group would like to encourage everyone eligible to apply, but please do not use your vouchers yet to place an order for satellite broadband. Our experience to date has been that this is a poor, expensive, unreliable, and slow service soon dropped by all involved in the previous CDS satellite trial.
It is likely to be of better value, with the best chance of securing a collective better service for our area, if local residents will await the outcome of the cabinet realignment request before using their vouchers for installation of satellite broadband. This may allow us to look to develop a structure which would effectively allow us to 'pool' vouchers to secure a superior wireless solution, should BT refuse to carry out cabinet realignment.
It is hoped that such pooling could be the best possible chance to reach all those properties in the Trinity Ward across an arc from Dowlands, via St Marys to Raymonds Hill and Yawl to deliver superfast broadband to all.
Its been an extremely frustration six years since Ian and I first established the group, but rest assured we are not giving up our efforts to explore all options to secure a better broadband service for our small rural part of East Devon.
Trinity Broadband Group
Max Hunt Wednesday, 27 July 2016 12:00 Comment Link
we are at Charton and like you, believe that cabinet realignment is by far the best option.
I am an IT consultant, though not a telecoms expert, I understand the issues and technologies.
I work mainly from home over VPN and I have to do at lot of remote access/control work which is frustratingly slow and sometimes impossible with the 'relatively fast' speed of 4Mb compared to some on the Rousdon estate.
I am keen that we push as much as possible to acheive cabinet realignment from cabinet 1 to cabinet 11 Rousdon , it seems on the face of it, a very cheap option. The line from Charton all the way down the A3052 to Cabinet 1 in Lyme is absurd when there is now a cabinet a stone's throw away at Rousdon.
Would this need to be everyone at Charton (Whitlands and Pinhay) moving cabinet in one go, or can each dwelling move cabinet independently?
I am happy to get everyone at Charton to agree if need be and put pressure on our MP and BT to make this happen.
Please email me direct if I can help?