BY SHUJAUL AZAM
Ten thousand homes on housing estates across Wandsworth can now access super-fast broadband – with Wandsworth claiming the borough has the largest number of fibre-enabled homes in the capital.
The council said people living on estates have been given the chance to sign up for broadband, offering some of the fastest connection speeds in London, including two sheltered housing schemes.
Wandsworth is working with a company called Community Fibre Ltd to install its ‘Gigafast’ broadband in council-managed blocks.
The aim is to enable residents to easily get online to search for jobs and to work and study from home, run small businesses, access council services and more.
So far homes across the Savona, Patmore, Carey Gardens, Doddington, Kambala, Rollo, Surrey Lane, Winstanley and York Road, Ashburton, Arndale and William Willison estates have the capacity to access the service.
Over the next few weeks more will join them, including Doris Emmerton Court and Holmleigh Court sheltered schemes. Longer term the council’s partnership with Community Fibre Ltd aims to offer more than 20,000 homes access to the Gigafast network over the next few years.
The Gigafast service has clocked download speeds of more than 1,000 megabits per second (Mbit/s) – around 47 times faster than the UK average of 22.8Mbit/s (Ofcom figure). It uses optical fibre cables installed directly into people’s homes, rather than the old copper technology.
Using Gigafast broadband means that families are able to download films, music and browse on multiple devices at the same time with no drop in performance.
Equally, those who work or study from home could benefit from increased internet speeds and better accessibility.
The Gigafast service costs residents £40 a month to subscribe to the unlimited ‘gigabit per second’ speeds. Other packages are also available for residents that do not need a full speed service. Customers don’t have to pay a line rental charge as with other providers, and downloads are unlimited.
Tony from Battersea said: “Everything from first contact to installation was at the speed of light and done in a friendly and efficient manner, instilling nothing but confidence and reassurance that should any problems arise it will be sorted in next to no time. Sounds too good to be true? Give them a try.”
The council’s housing spokesman Clare Salier said: “Fast, reliable broadband is not a luxury – these days it’s a necessity. We want Wandsworth to be London’s most connected borough and this ultrafast service means people living on our estates can truly make the most of fast online access and all the benefits that brings.”
To find out more or sign up for Gigafast broadband in your home visit the Community Fibre website.