Community

Box Broadband – Fibre Partnership

Bringing ultrafast, fibre broadband to all communities

Box Broadband is busy building its networks, providing customers with access to the latest, pure, full fibre, ultrafast broadband and voice services. Whilst more of the UK is getting access to better services, we understand there are plenty of areas that still lag behind and are not currently being considered for a scheme.

Not all these are rural areas, poor performing infrastructure also affects business parks, industrial estates, blocks of flats, etc.

At Box we aim to provide a viable solution, working in partnership with local communities with the project being part funded by us and part funded by the community.

How does a Community Fibre Partnership work?

  • A local group or organisation contacts us with an initial plan of the area and number of properties.
  • We check to see if there are other schemes available and which current services already exist in the area.
  • Box provides an initial project overview and cost.
  • Once a project plan and funding is agreed we build the network and connect customers.
  • We work closely with the local community and their nominated representative with funds being released as agreed milestones are reached.
  • On completion your broadband and telephone problems are solved, forever!

The key to delivering pure fibre broadband is working with communities. Equally as important as funding is help from the community itself. This includes community engagement, assisting with wayleave and local land owners providing access to their land.

The lower the cost to build, the more properties we can include, bringing the benefits of a full fibre solution to all and not just a few.

FAQs

What size does a community need to be?
A community can range in size; from a small group of houses, an industrial estate, a business park through to an entire village that could include schools, businesses, etc. It does not necessarily need to be next to a current Box Broadband area.

Does the Box Broadband use the existing network, e.g openreach infrastructure?
No, the Box Broadband network is completely separate and independent from any existing telephone and broadband networks. We do not need to touch or alter existing networks in any way, additionally customers either having a connection outside their property or connecting to the Box Broadband do not need to leave their current provider unless they wish. By being a separate network we are providing real choice, we are not just providing a number of service providers over the exisiting connection.

How much will it cost?
Network construction can differ greatly, based on several factors, these include:

  • Type of construction required, e.g. digging in roads and pavements is more costly than in verges and fields.
  • Access to crossing private land, getting permission to install fibre optic cabling across private fields and land can reduce costs significantly as it is easy to undertake than works on the highway.
  • Land ownership, it is important to understand that not all verges and roads are owned by local authorities and highways, wayleave payments can applicable, these add to the overall construction cost.Access to backhaul; the term “backhaul” relates to the connection to national fibre optic infrastructure, or the connection back to the datacentre (normally in London), another way of looking at is the connection to the 'national grid' of internet.

What if the network costs more to build, will the community have to find more funding?
In short no, once a partnership scheme is agreed Box Broadband will undertake the work for the agree costs, however it is important to understand that any significant changes to a scheme could require additional funding. It is essential for all parties in the partnership that adequate due diligence is completed prior to agreeing a scheme. Building networks is more complex than generally thought, there are a lot of stages to complete, including legal, land-ownership, other existing utilities plant (e.g. gas, electrical, water infrastructure), local planning and restrictions, and many more.

How can we help to make a BBFP project successful?
There several things that will greatly assist a successful BBCP, these are detailed below:

  • Identifying one or two local people to act as “local broadband champions”. This includes helping us with engaging the local community, identifying land owners, assisting with information relating to wayleaves and lots more. Generally, this takes a few hours a week, it can include some evenings and weekends. It is enjoyable working with the local Box Broadband team and the end result is amazing broadband being delivered as part of a community partnership.
  • Getting as many properties to sign up to the CFP, this does not necessarily mean they have to take the broadband service. A property having access to an ultrafast, pure fibre broadband service benefits the property’s value, renting potential and benefits the local community, schools, organisations and businesses.
  • Remembering this is a partnership, whilst we are experts at building and operating fibre optic networks, nobody knows and understands the local community better than the people who live in it, you, the local community are the key.

Are there community benefits beyond the network construction phase?
Box Broadband offers community engagement and “tech” assistance to all customers on an on-going basis once the network is operational. This can include free community workshops, free home “tech help” visits to ensure our customers are getting the most from their new connection. Box Broadband is committed to work with communities, we aim to install a free broadband connection to all village halls and community centres within our networks to benefit all who want to access our fantastic network.

What are the first steps?
if you are part of a community and feel a BBFP could be a viable option contact us on: BBFP@boxbroadband.co.uk or call our team on 03301 130 180. Having an idea of the size, area and existing services will assist us, we will than have an initial look and undertake a viability assessment, from this further information will be provided to you detailing the next steps.

What are costs? How much does the community need to contribute?
Box Broadband has a standard commercial model to construct networks, these are based on standard industry rates. The majority of BBFP communities are in areas that can be challenging to deliver too, therefore the community provides the funding for the additional costs. Once an area is defined and we have carried out our design process we will provide the required financial information for the community to make their decision.