Iwade in Kent uses public funds to pay BT to roll out fibre broadband

A small village in Kent has used local funds to pay BT to roll out broadband fibre in the area. The installation of the broadband provider will offer broadband speeds of up to 40Mbps.

The village of Iwade had secured a grant of 13,000 pounds from Kent County Council to pay for the extension of fibre from a telephone exchange in close by Sittingbourne, which had already been chosen by BT for upgrading broadband.

All of the four of Iwade's telephone cabinets will receive fibre-to-the-cabinet broadband, in a move that will help home workers as well as businesses when the roll out will go live in autumn.

The British broadband provider has plans to spend 2.5 billion pounds to roll out fibre broadband to two-thirds of the country. However, the company has already declared that the "final third" of homes in rural areas would themselves have to make investments to get fibre-based broadband.

Commenting on the public participation, BT Openreach CEO Steve Robertson said, “Our investment is one of the biggest commercial investments in fibre in the world, and we are prepared to invest further if others are prepared to work with us.”

The Conservative-Liberal Democrats coalition government announced in May that it also recognised the need of public funding to help the roll out of fibre broadband in areas that could not be reached by the market alone. The coalition government also announced that it would use a part of the BBC TV licence fee to fund the roll out of superfast broadband services across the country.