Unfortunately there is not a great deal of progress to report on getting fibre broadband into Ropley since Christmas.

Gigaclear are still focused locally on getting their installation in Four Marks and Medstead completed – they appear to have completed all of their major roadworks to install the backbone of their network, and are now focused on installing the local sections along the streets off the main roads. The first indication that we will have that they are moving on to Ropley will be signs of roadworks along the A31 or around their proposed local hub in Bishops Sutton, almost opposite the Ship public house.

Cityfibre are still engage in surveying the 76,000 properties that were included in their BDUK contract to install fibre to most the remaining properties in Hampshire. Their programme divides these into 4 phases served by four new hubs located in Winchester, Basingstoke, Fleet and Andover. Unfortunately they are proposing to serve Ropley through their Basingstoke hub and this is the last one scheduled to be built, so the associated survey work is also last on the schedule.

I am still trying to ascertain the funding position regarding properties that are included in the Cityfibre contract but are subsequently served by a commercial company such as Gigaclear. The question has been elevated to the government department for a response. This is important as if Gigaclear serve the easier part of the village, roughly half the village, and if half the funding also goes it will make it disproportionately difficult for Cityfibre to cover the rest.

I hope to have more, and better news by the next issue of BMRT.

Charles Louisson

By editor