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Openreach engineer at work

Openreach is making good progress with providing Full Fibre broadband connectivity to thousands of people as part of its latest collaboration with Connecting Devon and Somerset (CDS).

More than 2,000 premises in some of the hardest to reach rural areas in the region will receive ultrafast broadband coverage through Openreach’s ongoing Full Fibre rollout for CDS.

Openreach is actively building to around 1,500 of those premises in a number of communities throughout Devon and Somerset, including Bampton, Brompton Ralph, Coffinswell, parts of Dulverton, Ilfracombe, Kentisbury Ford, Oakford, Parracombe, Rackenford, Shaugh Prior, Stogumber, Washford, and Watermouth.

In the coming months build is expected to start in Brayford, Butterleigh, Cadbury, Cadeleigh, Cheriton Fitzpaine, Filleigh, North Molton, Silverton, South Molton, Stockleigh Pomeroy and Thorverton.

Design and survey work has also been undertaken in Clapworthy Mill, Meeth, South Zeal, Throwleigh, Satterleigh and Warkleigh.

More than 400 premises are currently ready for service in communities, including parts of the parish of Bickleigh and Wotter, Combeinteignhead, parts of Dulverton, and Lane End near Peter Tavy.

Councillor Rufus Gilbert, CDS Board Member and Cabinet Member for Economic Recovery and Skills, said: “Openreach is providing connectivity in a number of communities right across Devon and Somerset as part of its programme with CDS. It’s pleasing to see that our current collaboration is ensuring Full Fibre access takes in some of the most hard-to-reach areas, and this has been made possible thanks to the reinvestment of funding generated through the successful take-up of broadband under the CDS programme.”

Councillor Mike Rigby, CDS Board Member and Somerset County Council Lead Member for Transport and Digital, said: “The bulk of the work being undertaken by Openreach through this programme is now underway and more and more communities will be seeing this vital work carried out in their area. The number of premises ready for service is moving in the right direction and this additional investment in vital infrastructure is providing homes and businesses with the digital connectivity they need.”

Connie Dixon, Regional Partnership Director for Openreach, said: “It’s great to see that more homes and businesses across Devon and Somerset can now order an ultrafast, ultra-reliable broadband service through a provider of their choice on the Openreach network because of our Gainshare work with CDS. We encourage anyone in these areas to use our fibre checker at to check their infrastructure and upgrade wherever possible.”

Thanks to increasing public take-up of broadband services funded by CDS, the Government’s “Gainshare” agreement with Openreach is enabling CDS to re-invest £6 million in additional Full Fibre infrastructure. Openreach is also contributing funding towards the programme.