Super fast broadband rollout in Portsmouth to start in 2020

SCHOOLCHILDREN across the city will benefit from 'cutting edge technology' as a £3.8m rollout of super-fast fibre broadband is due to begin in the new year.

Friday, 20th December 2019, 4:45 pm
Updated Tuesday, 24th December 2019, 1:12 pm
'Ultrafast' broadband will be extended in Portsmouth next year, and will be available in schools

Using a government grant Portsmouth City Council is investing in an 'exciting' new infrastructure that will provide gigabit (1GB) internet speeds to all schools, as well as libraries, council offices and other public sector buildings.

Provided by company City Fibre, the scheme will extend the city's current 21-mile network of fibre broadband that already serves parts of the council and will connect Portsea Island with Fareham, Gosport, Cosham, Havant and Waterlooville.

For Councillor Suzy Horton, the council's education boss, the priority was improving internet for schools. She said: 'This project means Portsmouth is set to compete on an international level for businesses and become a prime place for any looking for a UK location.

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New cabling will bring faster broadband to Portsmouth

'However, what I'm most excited about is the benefits this will bring to schools and communities.

'The difference enriched learning opportunities can make to children is immeasurable and this new network can mean pupils in Portsmouth schools will be able to access cutting-edge technology and be at the forefront of the latest developments in education.'

It is planned construction work will begin in early 2020 and will take up to two years to complete, with some networks going live along the way.

Some areas of the city will be dug up to lay cables, however, City Fibre insisted they would use 'methods that minimise disruption to local residents and businesses.'

From left, MP Matt Warman, Cllr Suzy Horton and Portsmouth City Council leader Cllr Gerald Vernon-Jackson sign the deal for a £3.8m investment into fibre broadband in the city, capable of 1GB download speeds. Picture: Portsmouth City Council

Rob Hamlin, chief commercial officer at City Fibre, said: 'This project will play a key role in transforming Portsmouth into a modern, fully connected, digital city.

'As the UK continues on its path to full fibre by 2025, it’s pleasing to see local authorities get ahead of the game by future proofing their public sector estates with full fibre infrastructure ready to meet the needs of an increasingly digital public sector.'

Services to the public sector sites will be delivered by MLL Telecom.

Services to the private sector will be sold by two companies – M12 Solutions of Fareham and Southampton-based Vostron. M12 Solutions has created a brand name - Giganet - for the project.