We’ve reached another major milestone today with the activation of our first subscriber on the network. The cabinet, underlying network backhaul and other services are all live and the network is, in part at least, lit and ready to use!
Fibre cables before burial installed at a property
Our first subscriber’s 50Mbps service is delivering precisely as expected, and represents the start of connections being made to the network. Over the next few weeks Gigaclear and their installation contractors (Boxcom) will be installing and activating everyone else who has already made an order, or sending out kits to self-install customers.
All the works with the exception of Thameside and the caravan parks are complete, with these works to be completed in the coming weeks.
Our initial survey, conducted in early 2013, showed that a shocking proportion of the parish had no internet connectivity whatsoever. The majority of these properties were homes at Thameside Court at Bablockhythe, connected to aluminium/copper lines nearly 8 kilometres long and unlikely ever to receive an upgrade under normal commercial terms. These lines are often totally unable to even achieve ADSL sync, let alone attain speeds above a few hundred kilobits per second. Reliability was another problem – flooding and even heavy rain made whatever service was available disappear.
Today the first properties in Thameside were passed by the contractors building the network, providing a pure fibre to the premises connection capable of over 1Gbps. Even when it rains or floods. Continue reading
Now that the bulk of the network is installed – Thameside and other properties at Bablockhythe will be passed in the coming week and represent the last significant civil works to be undertaken – the only remaining bit of work to do to connect to the new network is to install the fibre patch between the connection point (“boundary box”) and the router in your home. Continue reading
Gigaclear’s contractors, Boxcom and MKJ Communications, have been hard at work installing the fibre network. There’s a cabinet in the middle of the village, opposite the Village Hall, where the “backhaul” connection to the internet will be split out. Each house has its own fibre which is terminated at the cabinet and connected on to the high speed connections back to Gigaclear’s “core” network and from there on to the internet. The other end – the one that connects to the home – is terminated in a little black pot, or “customer connection point”. So what’s inside?
Three customer connection points, ready for connections
The cabinet is here! This is the central point for the entire network and will house all the various bits of equipment required to connect properties to the backhaul networks and onwards to the internet, as well as the power supply system for everything. Power is being sourced from the buried cables in the village, and the fibre cables are already in place in ducts next to the cabinet!
The build is absolutely racing on through the village, with the beginnings of the cabinet opposite the Village Hall now installed and many more fibre connection points being installed every day! Griffiths Close is almost entirely done well ahead of schedule and the main road (Church Road) is looking like it’ll be done later this week! Click on the photos below for full size versions.
72 fibres winding their way down the road
Cabinet plinth and power cabling