Cable operator Virgin Media UK has announced that 14,000 premises in Burton-on-Trent (East Staffordshire), Dronfield (Derbyshire), Thurmaston (Leicestershire) will be the next to get access to their “gigabit-ready” ultrafast broadband ISP and TV network (we still don’t know when those Gigabit speed will actually arrive).
The deployment is of course part of VM’s £3bn Project Lightning network extension, which hopes to bring their Hybrid Fibre Coax (HFC) and Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) based EuroDOCSIS network to cover an additional 3-4 million premises across the United Kingdom by around the end of 2019 (possibly 2020).
Work is already underway in Burton, Dronfield and Thurmaston, with completion expected by the end of 2019. The announcement also noted that VM had invested approximately £1bn over the past year into its network.
Julie Agnew, Executive Director for VM’s Project Lightning, said:
“We are delighted to be connecting more families and small businesses in Burton-on-Trent to our brilliant broadband service. Giving them greater speeds will enable them to do the things they need to do and love doing more quickly and more easily. Laying new fibre means we will have to dig up roads and pavements, but we will do our best to minimise any disruption to the community.”
The operator tends to use narrow trenching (where possible) in order to minimise disruption and residents are typically informed at least one week in advance of any work taking place. A Local Community Liaison Officer will apparently be available to discuss any concerns and some local meetings will also take place (apparently the details for this “will be promoted in local shop windows and on social media“).