£25m project to future-proof Bath’s digital infrastructure with a full fibre network gets underway

June 11, 2021

Work to bring better connectivity within the reach of almost every home and business in Bath has started – with CityFibre, the UK’s largest independent full fibre platform, breaking ground in the city.

CityFibre is investing £25m in a network that it says will future-proof Bath’s digital needs for generations to come.

Along with its build partner Kier Group, CityFibre is working in close partnership with Bath & North East Somerset Council and local communities to deliver a fast rollout while minimising potential disruption. 

While each area of the city will typically take a few weeks to complete, CityFibre says construction teams are likely to be outside each home for just two to three days. Residents will be contacted by post ahead of work starting. 

The overall project is expected to reach completion by 2023 but the first services will go live for people to take advantage of much sooner. Work started this week in Weston.

As the network is completed in each neighbourhood, internet service providers (ISPs) will begin delivering some of the fastest and best value broadband packages available in the country.  

In Bath, services are not yet live but will be available from a range of broadband providers. Across the UK, CityFibre is already working with launch partner Vodafone to deliver next generation broadband services, with TalkTalk and other providers expected to join the network soon.  

Businesses interested in giving their home broadband a boost should enter their location in a postcode checker to see when they will be connected. They can also submit their details to be kept up to date on progress and discover who they can get gigabit services from once their area is connected.  

CityFibre city manager for Bath Neil Madle, pictured, said: “Bath is a historic city most often associated with the likes of Jane Austen and its Roman Baths, but it’s also a forward-looking area with one of the fastest-growing tech economies in the UK.

“I’m immensely proud to see work getting underway in Bath as it means businesses and residents will soon have access to the best infrastructure available. 

“It’s important to remember that any short-term disruption will pay off tremendously in the long-term. 

“Once the network’s built, it will serve the community’s connectivity needs for decades to come and underpin the city’s digital ambitions.” 

Full fibre networks, unlike many copper-based ‘fibre broadband’ services, use 100% fibre optic cables which give users speeds of up to 1,000 Mbps for upload and download, near limitless bandwidth and better connectivity.  

Full fibre is viewed as an essential digital utility capable of boosting households and businesses, driving a range of economic benefits, such as higher productive and innovative. 

Bath & North East Somerset Council deputy Leader and cabinet member for resources and economic development, Cllr Richard Samuel, said: “It is fantastic that CityFibre is now ready to start delivering its £25m infrastructure investment programme in Bath, providing a citywide network that will benefit residents, businesses and services.

“This is a once-in-a-generation upgrade that will futureproof our network infrastructure at a time when connectivity has never been so important. Access to fast reliable broadband is vital to the recovery of the local economy, enabling local businesses to attract the best talent and more residents to access or return to employment through flexible working.”

London-based CityFibre, the UK’s third national digital infrastructure platform, has a £4bn network rollout underway with plans to pass up to 8m homes and businesses with open-access full fibre infrastructure.


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