Gigaclear has been awarded a contract by Essex County Council to deliver superfast broadband under the ‘Rural Challenge’ project. It is one of the few contracts for Broadband Delivery UK not to have been awarded to BT.
The Rural Challenge is part of the Superfast Essex broadband delivery programme, which is set to provide 116,000 Essex residences with speeds of up to 24 Mbps by 2020 under a contract with BT.
Under the deal, Gigaclear will deploy fibre optic connections to over 4,500 homes and provide access to broadband speeds of 50 Mbps and up to 1000Mbps.
The £7.5 million project is being funded jointly by the UK government, Essex County Council, Epping Forest District Council and Gigaclear; expansion of the rollout outside of the current area is dependent on future funding availability.
Deputy leader of Essex County Council, Kevin Bentley, said: “This is very exciting news for Essex. Providing broadband access in rural areas of our county is important and it is exactly what the BDUK programme is working to address.”
Matthew Hare, chief executive, Gigaclear commented: “We are thrilled to have been selected by Essex County Council to deliver what will be one of the fastest broadband networks in the UK.”
Digital economy minister, Ed Vaizey, added: “The Superfast Essex programme has made tremendous progress in rolling out superfast broadband to rural communities.”
Gigaclear is to begin work on the project in November 2015 with the first homes connected before the end of the year and the project fully completed by December 2016.
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