FTTP Fibre Upgrade Project — Frequently Asked Questions

Abbotts Ann FTTP Fibre Broadband Upgrade Project – FAQ

Below are some commonly asked questions, with regards to the village FTTP upgrade
project. We hope this resolves any queries and allows you to support the project to
upgrade Abbotts Ann’s internet infrastructure, by making use of this time limited
government funding.

Click HERE for a PDF copy of the latest FAQ

How long will the Abbotts Ann FTTP Upgrade Project take?
This is the $64 million question! Assuming we can get sufficient sign-ups, and mobilise enough people within our community to take up the offer of the free fibre upgrade, works on the project would likely start within six months or so following on from our deadline of July 2nd which has recently been extended to 20th October 2021.
As we progress through the process, we will be able to update you more fully in terms of exact timelines. Hopefully though, should we hit our targets by July 2nd which has recently been extended to 20th October 2021.– hopefully we would be up and running with FTTP fibre infrastructure within 12 months or so. Needless to say – this is subject to change!

Frankly, right now we just need to get this project over the line – so anything you can do to help us reach everyone on the list of 600+ addresses to encourage them to sign up would be massively appreciated.

Is there a catch to this FTTP upgrade?
NO, this government funding allows us as a village to be prioritised in terms of the national FTTP rollout. This “Free Gigabit Fibre” installation is more about prioritising who they (Openreach) do first, rather than if they do it. Everyone eventually will be forced to switch to fibre because in July 2025 copper phone lines will be switched off. So why not support the village FTTP Upgrade Project now, while you have the opportunity and whilst it won’t cost you anything?

Does the Abbotts Ann FTTP upgrade project give me free Internet access?

NO – the Abbotts Ann FTTP upgrade project is solely concerned with upgrading the copper cable that currently serves your property, and replacing it (for FREE – funded by the government) with fibre from the Abbotts Ann exchange, to the edge of your property. It is a village infrastructure upgrade. Once the FTTP upgrade has been carried out (assuming this project is viable and goes ahead), you will still need to pay an ISP (broadband provider) to access the Internet – just as you do now.

If my address is on the list, does that mean I’m automatically included in the FTTP upgrade project?

NO – the list features the properties that could be included in the FTTP upgrade project. In order to make use of the government funding (to pay for the FTTP upgrade), you must opt in to the project. You do this by filling in your details, and submitting them to us here: https://www.abbottsann.com/gigabit-broadband-signup-form/ 

Can I apply for Government funding (via the Abbotts Ann FTTP Upgrade Project) and carry on using my existing (non FTTP) Internet, once the upgrade has been carried out?
NO – as part of the grant, you will undertake to transfer your Internet to an FTTP (ultrafast) plan, once the upgrade has taken place. You won’t necessarily need to move ISP (broadband supplier) – most major suppliers already have FTTP plans. The majority of those that don’t, will be offering FTTP plans within the coming months, as the rollout of the national upgrade project progresses.

Can I do nothing?
You can, but it will probably cost you more than £1200 to get connected in future. Your current copper-cable based Internet service (even those that are currently labelled as ‘fibre’) will come to an end on or around around July 2025. At that point – you could either lose your landline (phone and Internet connection) entirely, and decide to use mobile
communications for all your phone and data requirements.
If you choose to upgrade to FTTP at this point (rather than now) – you are likely to be charged upwards of £1200 per property to be connected to the FTTP network. By choosing to engage now – the government are offering to pay for the cost of connecting your property to the FTTP network (via the Abbotts Ann FTTP Upgrade Project). If you
decide against participating in this scheme, the likelihood is you will have to pay all of the installation costs yourself in future.

Does the upgrade to fibre come right into my property?
As part of the Abbotts Ann FTTP Upgrade Project, the fibre will be run to your premises boundary by Openreach. When you take out an FTTP plan with your ISP (broadband provider) – as part of their installation process, they will bring the fibre into your actual premises (most likely alongside the copper wire that will be there at the moment). As part of this process the engineers would terminate the fibre on an internal wall (most likely where your existing Internet comes into your house).

Will I need a new Router / Modem?
YES – but most FTTP ultra fast broadband packages come bundled with a suitable FTTP router, so you will get the new router when you migrate to an FTTP package with your broadband provider.
Once the FTTP upgrade has been completed, you will need to change your broadband router. Your existing router/modem is designed for ADSL/copper cable. The FTTP routers provide better throughput speeds and connections to match the upgraded all fibre broadband conditions.

Do I need to re-cable my house with new Ethernet cable?
NO. Ethernet (CAT5 / CAT6 cable) is good for gigabit speeds, so no need to rip up your carpets again!

Do I need to tell my ISP (broadband provider)?
YES – EVENTUALLY… but not for a while!
When the FTTP gigabit broadband upgrade has been completed, you will then need to get in touch with your broadband provider, to request a migration across to one of their FTTP ultrafast broadband plans, in order to make use of the increased stability and speeds that FTTP offers.

Will FTTP Gigabit Broadband cost me more per month?
Typically ultrafast FTTP broadband plans currently cost around £3-£5 more per month than a standard FTTC fibre broadband plan. This obviously varies by supplier – so check with your own ISP (broadband supplier), in terms of the deals they can offer you.
Don’t forget though, you’re ultimately getting a much better product (quicker and more stable) – and properties with FTTP typically sell at a premium, compared with those that rely on copper cable Internet.

For latest Ultrafast deals look here: https://www.broadbandchoices.co.uk/broadband/ultrafast
Ultimately, as copper wire infrastructure is phased out across the UK (eventually being switched off in July 2025), you can expect monthly prices to drop. Exactly as they did in the transition from dial-up to broadband version 1 (ADSL), and from ADSL to fibre (FTTC).

Will Openreach need to dig up my drive?
NO – only in exceptional circumstances. Any work like this would only be carried out after Openreach have fully consulted with you. As a rule the fibre will be flown in by telegraph poles – just like the existing copper cable network is.

Will Openreach be digging up the local roads?
Openreach will be flying most of the fibre cable using existing telegraph poles. In exceptional circumstances, they may need to put ducting in underground to carry the fibre. But this is very much the exception not the rule. We will know more about this as the project progresses towards the works stage – should we reach our targets to get the
project over the line.

Will there be any disruption to the Internet whilst this work is carried out?
NO. The fibre network will be implemented alongside the existing copper infrastructure. So we can continue to enjoy our existing subpar village cabling whilst the upgrade is going on! However, the copper infrastructure is due to be disconnected, and phased out from July 2025. At which point you will need FTTP in order to continue having an Internet service.