£39m Broadband Boost for the East Midlands

More than 131,000 more homes and businesses across the East Midlands are set to benefit from a
major broadband boost thanks to a £39m investment by Openreach – the UK’s largest digital network
provider, used by the likes of BT, Sky, TalkTalk and Vodafone.

When work is finished, people living and working in more than a dozen communities across Derbyshire,
Leicestershire and Nottinghamshire will be able to contact their broadband provider and upgrade to full
fibre broadband, with the new network being built to the majority of premises in locations such as: Langley Mill (Derbyshire), Coalville and Market Harborough (Leicestershire), and Bulwell and Newark (both Nottinghamshire).

This is a further boost for the East Midlands as it follows several key announcements last year
outlining plans that more than 700,000 homes and businesses would be getting access to Openreach’s
new network, including 300,000 in rural and harder to serve areas.

Kasam Hussain, Openreach’s regional director for the Midlands, said:

“Nobody in the UK is building full fibre faster, further or at a higher quality than Openreach. We’re reaching more communities than ever and our team of highly-skilled engineers, alongside our build partners, are working hard to deliver some of the fastest and most reliable broadband available anywhere in Europe.
“In 2021 our engineers built around 770 metres of new broadband cables every minute – making
Ultrafast broadband available to another home every 13 seconds. We’ve already reached six million homes and businesses across the UK with ultrafast full fibre technology including more than 350,000 premises across the East Midlands, but we know there’s more to do and we’re committed to doing it.”

Full fibre broadband is up to ten times faster than the average home broadband connection and
around five times more reliable than the traditional copper-based network, providing more predictable,
consistent speeds.
Across the East Midlands more than 75,000 homes and businesses have already ordered a full
fibre service from a range of retail service providers using the Openreach network. But this means
another 275,000 could be benefiting from some of the fastest, most reliable broadband connections in
the world and have yet to upgrade.

Recent research by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr) highlighted the clear
economic benefits of connecting everyone in the East Midlands to full fibre. It estimated this would
create a £3.5 billion boost to the local economy.
Openreach engineers have been working hard to make the technology available to as many people
as possible throughout the UK and the company’s plans are fundamental to the UK Government
achieving its target of delivering ‘gigabit capable’ broadband to 85 per cent of UK by 2025. The
company will invest billions of pounds to reach a total of 25 million premises by the end of December
2026, including more than six million in the hardest-to-serve parts of the country defined by industry
regulator Ofcom.
Openreach employs more than 1,600 people across the East Midlands region, and you can find out
more about our Fibre First programme, latest availability and local plans here.

For further information:
For more information about this story, contact Chris Jones on chris.jones@openreach.co.uk. All news releases can be accessed on our web site and you can follow us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram for the latest Openreach news, views and opinion.

Ten full fibre broadband facts:
1. Research shows connecting everyone in the UK to full fibre broadband by 2025 could remove 300 million commuter
trips, reducing CO2 emissions by an estimated 360,000 tonnes each year.
2. Fibre optics are strands of glass around one tenth the thickness of a human hair. They transmit data using light
signals.
3. A single strand of fibre can provide enough capacity to serve up to 32 individual properties with Gigabit speeds.
4. Pure fibre optic broadband can run at speeds of 1 gigabit per second (1000Mbps). You can download a two-hour
HD film in less time than it takes to make a cup of tea. And video gamers could download a 5-gigabyte virtual
reality (VR) game in 1.7 minutes, instead of waiting half an hour.
5. More people getting online at the same time is easier too – a family of four can all stream ultra HD or 4k quality
video simultaneously, without waiting or buffering.
6. Full fibre is more reliable than traditional copper connections. A full fibre broadband signal isn’t affected by external interference whereas copper can be impacted by outside electrical signals – including electric fences, bad weather and even old TVs! One recent report states fibre has five times fewer faults than copper connections.
7. A fibre optic cable can send a signal over 120 miles without any real loss of quality. Traditional copper cables can lose signal at around one mile.
8. Full fibre is better for the environment – the amount of electricity used to power fibre is significantly less than needed for copper cables.
9. Full fibre can boost business productivity. It enables cheaper broadband powered phone services, and better access to cloud-based computing services. For example, full fibre connectivity combined with cloud computing means businesses can upload, store, access and download vast amounts of data in minutes instead of hours. Data is backed up and securely archived off-site so not relying on costly, ageing servers taking up expensive office space.
10. Full fibre broadband will be crucial in supporting plans to give NHS patients access to ‘virtual clinics’ where patients who don’t physically need to come hospital can get a video consultation with their doctor. It can also allow hospitals to share HD quality graphics of medical scans in seconds to improve diagnosis speeds. For example, medical staff can download a 2 gigabyte CT scan in 40 seconds, instead of 14 minutes.

About Openreach
Openreach Limited is the UK’s digital network business.
We’re more than 35,000 people, working in every community to connect homes, schools, shops, banks, hospitals, libraries, mobile phone masts, broadcasters, governments and businesses – large and small – to the world.
Our mission is to build the best possible network, with the highest quality service, making sure that everyone in the UK can be connected.
We work on behalf of more than 665 communications providers like BT, SKY, TalkTalk, Vodafone, and Zen, and our broadband network is the biggest in the UK, passing more than 31.8m premises.
Over the last decade we’ve invested more than £15 billion into our network and, at more than 190 million kilometres – it’s now long enough to wrap around the world 4,798 times.
Today we’re building an even faster, more reliable and future-proof broadband network which will be the UK’s digital platform for decades to come. We’re making progress towards our full fibre optic network target to reach 25 million premises by December 2026. Research shows a nationwide Full Fibre network could potentially provide a £59bn boost to UK productivity.
To help build the new fibre network and deliver better service across the country – we’ve created and filled more than 9,000 apprenticeship roles in the last two years and we’re recruiting another 1,000 trainee roles in Openreach in 2021.
We’re also building greener – we operate the UK’s second largest commercial fleet and want to help lead the transition to electric vehicles, with a target to transition our fleet to being electric in 2030.
Openreach is a highly regulated, wholly owned, and independently governed unit of the BT Group. More than 90 per cent of our revenues come from services that are regulated by Ofcom and any company can access our products under equivalent prices, terms and conditions.
For the year ended 31 March 2021, we reported revenue of £5,244m
For more information, visit www.openreach.com

Back to News