£50m full-fibre project to put Newcastle at ‘top tier’ of internet connectivity

North East | Property & Construction | Technology
Ged Bell, Newcastle City Council’s Cabinet Member for Employment and Culture, Jason Legget, and CityFibre’s City Manager for Newcastle upon Tyne at the start of work on Newcastle new full-fibre network.
Ged Bell, Newcastle City Council’s Cabinet Member for Employment and Culture, Jason Legget, and CityFibre’s City Manager for Newcastle upon Tyne at the start of work on Newcastle new full-fibre network.

Newcastle’s business community is looking forward to joining the ‘top tier of UK cities for connectivity’ with its £50m full-fibre installation project now well underway.

CityFibre is investing the huge sum in a ‘transformational’ network which will reach almost every home and business in the city.

The Newcastle scheme is part of CityFibre’s nationwide plan to replace the country’s ageing copper-based networks with gigabit-capable full-fibre connectivity.

Full-fibre is revered as the best in connectivity for its speed, near-unlimited bandwidth and reliability – yet it is currently available to less than 11% of premises across the UK.

By using fibreoptic cables for every stage of the connection from the customer’s home or business to the internet, users will be offered a significantly superior and more reliable broadband service, capable of gigabit speeds (1000mbps).

Jason Legget, CityFibre’s City Manager for Newcastle upon Tyne, said: “Full-fibre connectivity and next generation broadband services will transform the lives people in Newcastle.

“This goes far beyond simply helping households access the latest entertainment at lightning speed. The benefits are far deeper, from enabling smart home technology to giving people the freedom to work from home with ease.

“As well as enhancing our home lives, CityFibre’s full-fibre network will give the city’s business community the platform they need to realise their growth ambitions.

“By connecting properties at up to 1000mbps we’re putting Newcastle firmly in the top tier of all UK cities for connectivity and establishing it as a globally competitive digital destination.”

The network is not yet live, but once activated, services will be available from an increasing range of broadband providers. Across the UK CityFibre is already working with launch partner Vodafone to deliver next generation broadband services, and TalkTalk is expected to join the network soon.

The project is also expected to create a significant number of job opportunities in the telecoms construction industry. CityFibre’s construction partner, IQA Elecnor, is recruiting hundreds of people to help build the state-of-the-art network.

Ged Bell, Newcastle City Council’s Cabinet Member for Employment and Culture, said: “Having a modern, fit-for-purpose digital infrastructure is vital for growing our economy and ensuring that homes and businesses get the very best digital connectivity.

“Not only will full-fibre attract new businesses, drive innovation and start-up growth but it will also modernise day-to-day services, support the adoption of new digital health technologies and bring benefits to all.”

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