Openreach Announces Fibre Pilot Sites

Openreach – BT’s local access network division – today announced the two sites for operational pilots of fibre to the cabinet (FTTC) to begin in summer 2009. Two exchanges, one in Muswell Hill, London and one in Whitchurch, South Glamorgan, will be used to conduct FTTC pilots involving up to 15,000 customer premises for each area. End user customers in these areas will experience headline speeds of up to 40 Mbp/s.

The pilots will follow a planned technical trial in the Foxhall exchange area of Kesgrave, Suffolk in early 2009, and the successful launch of the fibre to the premises (FTTP) product at Ebbsfleet Valley in Kent earlier this year.

David Campbell, Openreach’s director of next generation access said: “we are delighted to announce Whitchurch, South Glamorgan and Muswell Hill exchanges as the first sites chosen to pilot our fibre to the cabinet product. Services in these areas will be available to all UK communication providers on a wholesale basis.

The sites were chosen in consultation with communications providers and took into account feedback from Regional Development Agencies, Devolved Authorities and similar organisations. It was also necessary to take into account current network topology and our ability to run testing procedures in the chosen areas. We have a good mix of areas, allowing us to test our products in both urban and semi-rural environments.

These two sites were chosen from a shortlist and we expect to announce detailed plans for the initial market deployment of the Openreach product in early 2010, again following consultation with all interested parties.”