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How it’s going in Wigglesworth, Rathmell and Halton West

April 8, 2011

By Roderic Mather from the communities of Wigglesworth, Rathmell and Halton West

I attended the conference in Ripon and returned home fired-up to attack the project. There seemed to be nobody else from this area that attended the conference so I elected myself as local champion.

The 3 villages around here are Rathmell, Wigglesworth and Halton West. In order to gain the suggested level of support, I avoided the high cost of posting letters and the cost imposed on others to return signed forms of support and opted for the slightly less expensive tour of the district by car. As a result of two morning trips I had close on 100 signatures and feel that I have not even scratched the surface because many houses were unoccupied at the time of my calling.

Were there was someone at home, I received 100% support and consequently, am of the view that there is little point in taking things further because of the overwhelming desire of everybody in this area to gain access to faster broadband speeds.

Our own speed here is a magnificent 0.7mbps on a good day so you can understand our general frustration in running a business from home.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. cyberdoyle permalink
    April 9, 2011 6:33 am

    I think your story is replicated throughout the country. I don’t see the point in wasting the resources of the champions by doing more surveys and ‘raising awareness’. We need to get on and build our networks, and once there is a decent connection people will use it. Of that there is no doubt. I think you have proved the point.
    Well done.
    chris

  2. April 22, 2011 2:33 am

    Hello Roderic,

    Sounds like you are making great progress with the all-important activity of aggregating demand and if you want to discuss how NextGenUs UK CIC goes about this process then please get in touch.

    Also worth having a look at https://broadbandnorthyorkshire.wordpress.com/2011/03/23/newton-on-rawcliffes-broadband-story/ for the First FiWi in North Yorkshire that NextGenUs pioneered back in February 2010.

    More recently http://www.nextgenus.net/bookplus gives some insights into the First gigabit FttH village in the UK that went live in November 2010

    An interesting point to note about the above network is that it did not involve one penny of public money to build.

    NextGenUs is has available now several £Millions of private sector investment for the further deployment of future-proof FttH and FiWi networks where communities are ready to step up en-masse and simply demonstrate sufficient demand for service to be commercially sustainable.

    If the local community is ready to step up and commit to take service then it may not require any public subsidy to make real progress utilising the school’s fibre link.

    As a Community Interest Company, NextGenUs UK CIC locks the monopoly assets of the networks it builds and owns.

    This is important to safeguard local communities from future exploitation due as asset sale to a non-CIC is prevented.

    The other key CIC benefit that NextGenUs provides is that currently guarantees a minimum of £2 in every £3 of operating surplus is redistributed according to the Community Interest Test.

    NextGenUs is not content to settle for FiWi and is committed to reinvesting surplus over time to achieve FttH as widespread as mains electricity is today.

    Community Interest Companies (CICS) are limited companies, with special additional features, created for the use of people who want to conduct a business or other activity for community benefit, and not purely for private advantage.

    This is achieved by a “community interest test” and “asset lock”, which ensure that the CIC is established for community purposes and the assets and profits are dedicated to these purposes.

    Registration of a company as a CIC has to be approved by the Regulator who also has a continuing monitoring and enforcement role.

    What kind of price are folks being asked to pay for service BTW?

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