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Nearly every home and business in Northampton to have access to next-generation broadband thanks to major Gigabit City investment.

Northampton is set to benefit from a major investment of £40m in its digital future, as part of CityFibre plans to replace the nation’s legacy copper-based networks with gigabit-capable full fibre connectivity. This future-proof infrastructure is expected to boost productivity and innovation, and deliver millions in economic benefits for the town, while also giving residents access to the UK’s fastest broadband services.

Detailed planning is already underway as CityFibre designs a network capable of serving all the current and future digital demands of the town. On completion, the state-of-the-art network will reach nearly every home and business. It will also provide a platform for a new generation of smart city applications and backbone to support a future roll-out of 5G mobile services. CityFibre is working closely with Northampton Borough Council and Northamptonshire County Council to maximise the benefits of the roll-out.

The new infrastructure will build on the company’s existing full fibre network in the town, which has been dramatically improving the digital capabilities of businesses across Northampton since 2016. CityFibre will use modern build techniques to deploy the network quickly, while minimising disruption to residents. The roll-out will begin in autumn 2019, with Vodafone Gigafast broadband services set to go live by the end of the year.

CityFibre also announced today that Bournemouth would be joining the national roll-out. Alongside ten previously announced towns and cities, Northampton and Bournemouth mark more than one million homes identified for CityFibre’s full fibre roll-out. Network build is underway in seven cities and customers are already receiving Vodafone’s Gigafast broadband services in four of those.

At present, full fibre connectivity is only available to 6% of UK properties. By using fibre optic cables for every stage of the connection from the customer’s home or business to the internet, users are offered a significantly superior and more reliable broadband service, with download speeds 20 times faster and upload speeds 150 times faster than the average fixed broadband connection in the UK.

Greg Mesch, CEO at CityFibre, said: “At CityFibre we are leading the charge to switch over the UK from the copper wires of the past to the fibre of the future. Full fibre is the only infrastructure fit to power our economy in the digital age.

“With the addition of Northampton and Bournemouth to our previously announced Gigabit City projects, we have now identified over 1 million UK homes that will benefit from world-class connectivity. Our roll-outs are gathering momentum and we’re now focusing on selecting the next wave of cities in the programme.”

Neil Blagden, Director of Digital & Commercial Operations at Vodafone UK, said: “Full fibre can help fuel everything from hi-tech businesses to connected classrooms and buffer-free households. It will boost the local economies and improve people’s lives. We look forward to bringing the benefits of Vodafone Gigafast Broadband to residents and businesses in Northampton and Bournemouth later this year.”

Leader of Northampton Borough Council, Cllr Jonathan Nunn, added: “It’s been very exciting to work on this with CityFibre and we absolutely welcome their investment, which places Northampton at the forefront of the UK’s full fibre roll-out. The future is digital, therefore having the right infrastructure in Northampton is essential for us to remain competitive.

“This inward investment will help us attract businesses, build digital skills and resilience across local companies and services, and support new start up activity. It will also support the adoption of new innovations such as digital health and care services or e-learning tools. This, in turn, will drive economic growth with the benefits being felt by everyone who lives and works here.”

Leader of Northamptonshire County Council Cllr Matt Golby said: “As a county we are at the geographic heart of the UK and now with this investment we will be placed at the digital heart of the UK as well.

“This is superb news for businesses and residents alike and a significant vote of confidence in Northampton. The increases in download and upload speeds will be truly transformative for the local economy ensuring businesses can continue to prosper in a town at the very fore-front of the digital economy.”

To find out more about CityFibre and its Fibre-to-the-Premises roll-out, visit www.cityfibre.com/residential

To register your interest in Vodafone’s Gigafast Broadband services, visit www.vodafone.co.uk/gigafast

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