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Author Topic: Real Estate Firm Tells UK Farmers to Build their own Broadband  (Read 696 times)


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Real Estate Firm Tells UK Farmers to Build their own Broadband
« on: January 03, 2019, 04:03:22 PM »

Real estate company Strutt & Parker has suggested that UK farmers, many of which aren’t exactly swimming in lots of spare cash, should consider investing to build their own “private” broadband networks instead of waiting for whatever the Government’s 10Mbps+ Universal Service Obligation (USO) will deliver.

The new legally binding USO, which will be installed by BT (Openreach) or KCOM and pledges to deliver a minimum broadband download speed of at least 10Mbps (1Mbps upload) – upon request – to those in disadvantaged areas, could be formally introduced at the end of 2019 (officially enforced from 2020). This will focus on the final 2-3% of premises that cannot yet order a “superfast broadband” (24Mbps+) service.

However Strutt & Parker have told Farming UK that struggling farmers, many of which will exist in that final 2-3% of premises, could instead invest to build their own broadband networks. The company includes a suggestion of three potential options.

    Stuart Gray, Strutt & Parker, said:

    “In the past, the costs of installing a private broadband network may have looked unviable. But the importance now placed on good connectivity, with growing numbers of people working from home, means that attracting tenants is difficult without being able to offer a reliable broadband service.

    Each of the options have their own pros and cons and not all may be available for a particular use or location. But the good news is that in most instances there are practical solutions to the problem, some of which may attract grant funding.”

    S&P Proposed Alternative Broadband Options

    1. A leased fibre connection to the premises (FTTP) which involves installing a physical fibre connection from the mainstream network across private land.

    2. Satellite broadband which operates by sending and receiving a signal to a satellite rather than using the underground copper/fibre network.

    3. Over-the-air solutions such as Fixed Wireless Access networks which use specific frequencies of the radio spectrum to transmit signals.
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Re: Real Estate Firm Tells UK Farmers to Build their own Broadband
« Reply #1 on: January 03, 2019, 11:56:59 PM »

I had no idea who Strutt & Parkers were, as their approach seemed rather simplistic.  *   

I think a lot of people forget that the B4RN is rather fortunate (& rather unique)  in that they have the likes of Barry Forde's extensive knowledge behind them.  Most of the other key founding members also have links to Lancaster Uni, and the majority of their 'staff' have intensive knowledge in networking.

Barry has historically been at the forefront of Internet connectivity technology from his days as being responsible for networking at Lancaster Uni and the University network JANET.    I personally recall Lancaster Uni's innovative microwave links to supply broadband to remote universities/colleges/educational facilities dating way back to the late 90's and being totally amazed at the speeds of 2Mbps when most of use were lucky if we could afford 56k dial up.

There is absolutely no doubt that what B4RN has achieved has been fantastic and I'm certainly not knocking what they have achieved...  but so much of it relies on the technical expertise of certain key people, plus an enormous amount of goodwill by locals to do such things as digging or waive access fees which would cost any normal network co practically an arm and a leg.

I seriously doubt that your average farmer would have the slightest clue how to begin to build their own network...  nvm know where to start to find someone to provision the backhaul connectivity. ;'(

*  A quick google shows they put £200m of their farms up for sale - linky
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