Newsletter – July 2023

Over 77500 properties now able to connect to the fibre network

Topics in this edition:

  • CSW Project updates – Contract 3
  • Thousands of Warwickshire residents could benefit from Openreach’s proposed FCP plans
  • CityFibre making excellent progress with FTTP roll-out in Rugby
  • Alternative solutions will support our quest for gigabit-capable connectivity
  • Case studies needed – Tell us your story!
  • Copy for your own website or newsletter
  • Your questions answered

CSW Project updates – Contract 3

Another 12 Contract 3 structures have now gone live since our last newsletter was published in April. The communities benefiting from these most recent upgrades include parts of the following areas:

Barford, Bishops Tachbrook, Budbrooke, Claverdon, Chesterton, Deppers Bridge, Honiley, Hooknell, Lighthorne Rough, Littleworth, Marton, Moreton Morrell, Ratley and Wasperton.

Over 77,500 properties across the region are now able to connect to the fibre network thanks to the work completed by the CSW Broadband Project.

The pace of deployment is now starting to slow down somewhat as we deliver some of the more complex builds towards the end of Contract 3, which is due to be completed in December 2023.

The intention is then to move on to delivering the government’s Project Gigabit initiative and we will hopefully be able to provide you with a further update on this in our October newsletter.

As always, once we have received confirmation that a particular upgrade has been completed in the current build phase, we will try and inform as many of the affected residents as possible.

Remember, once your property has been upgraded, you won’t get a faster service automatically. You need to order the improved service with your chosen ISP in order to benefit from it. See our ‘Your questions answered’ section later in this newsletter for more information on this.

Thousands of Warwickshire residents could benefit from Openreach’s proposed FCP plans

Thousands of residents and business owners in rural areas of Warwickshire are set to benefit from an Openreach proposal to upgrade whole exchange areas to full fibre through their Fibre Community Partnership (FCP) scheme.

So far, Building Digital UK (BDUK) have approved six FCP schemes in the following exchange areas – Alderminster, Ilmington, Furnace End, Great Alne, Haseley Knob and Tanworth-in-Arden.

While some in these communities have already benefited from a full fibre connection from work carried out by the CSW Broadband Project or commercial providers, the aim is to upgrade the remaining properties in these exchange areas so that everyone in these communities can benefit.

The intention is for the schemes to be funded through the government’s Gigabit Broadband Voucher Scheme and so the network build in your area will not cost you a single penny.

Under the terms of the scheme, eligible residents and businesses can show their support by pledging the value of a gigabit voucher – worth up to £4,500. The value of these vouchers is then aggregated to offset the total cost of the build.

However, failure to secure enough voucher pledges will mean that the specific scheme in your exchange area will not be able to go ahead, so your support could be invaluable.

Openreach’s FCP team are actively engaging with residents and business owners in these areas to explain the benefits that full fibre connectivity can bring to their communities by talking to them directly, attending a series of parish council meetings and through online channels such as community Facebook pages.

Having a full fibre broadband connection provides homes and businesses with access to lightning-fast speeds through a far more reliable and stable connection, allowing you to browse the web faster, conduct online tasks more quickly and stream films and TV services without delay.

It also allows you to use multiple devices at the same time without your connection slowing you down and enables you to work from home more easily. Access to a full fibre connection has even been shown to increase the value of your property.

To pledge your support for better connectivity in your community, simply go to Openreach’s Connect My Community website, enter your postcode and click the Search button.

You’ll see details of how much has been pledged so far and you can add your support for the scheme in your area by clicking on the green ‘Pledge’ button and completing the simple online application form.

CityFibre making excellent progress with FTTP rollout in Rugby

Back in our October 2022 newsletter, we reported how network builder CityFibre had begun the roll-out of their new £17 million gigabit-capable Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) network across Rugby.

The project, which started last September, aims to reach nearly every property in the town, providing residents and businesses with a fast, reliable network that will future-proof all their digital needs.

The build is progressing well with the infrastructure roll-out already completed in most parts of the Rokeby & Overslade, Admirals & Cawston and New Bilton areas of the town. The Newbold and Brownsover ward will be the next area to be upgraded.

The roll-out is being completed by CityFibre’s build partner, Callan Connect, who are working closely with Rugby Borough Council to ensure that any disruption is managed as safely and efficiently as possible.

The full deployment programme is expected to be completed in 2024 and both CityFibre and Callan Connect would like to thank everyone for their ongoing support and patience with regards to this.

As CityFibre build wholesale networks, it means that there are a range of ISPs for customers to choose from, including Vodafone, TalkTalk, Zen Internet, Giganet and iDNET amongst others.

Anyone interested in upgrading their homes / business to the lightning-fast broadband speeds provided by full fibre can find out more about the build, pre-register their interest and ensure they are updated on service availability at

Alternative solutions will support our quest for gigabit-capable connectivity

As we have reported before, the government has ambitious plans to provide ‘gigabit capable’ broadband speeds of up to 1000Mbps to at least 85% of UK properties by December 2025 and to at least 99% by 2030.

The intention is to build a long-lasting network across the UK that will increase our competitiveness, boost productivity and meet the future demands of consumers and businesses for decades to come.

At least 80% of this coverage is expected to be achieved by the full fibre roll-out plans of commercial providers such as Openreach, Virgin Media, CityFibre and an array of smaller network builders, collectively known as AltNets.

The purpose of the government’s £5 billion Project Gigabit programme is to enable ‘harder to reach’ communities to access lightning-fast gigabit-capable broadband in areas where network providers don’t have any plans to upgrade commercially.

CSW will oversee this work in our area through the full fibre deployment contract that is due to be awarded later this year by Building Digital UK (BDUK), the government agency who oversee projects like ours.

While the aim is to take full fibre to as many eligible premises as possible with the funds that will be made available, it is unrealistic to expect all of these eligible properties to benefit from a full fibre connection due to the costs involved with laying fibre to the more remote locations in our region.

BDUK recognise that this will be an issue across the nation and so a number of alternative, potentially more affordable gigabit-capable solutions are currently being investigated.

At a more local level, the CSW Broadband Project is also looking into what we can do over the coming years to try and ensure that no one misses out on the benefits of better connectivity.

Such solutions will include provision for better 4G and 5G mobile connectivity and possible hybrid solutions (e.g. a combination of fibre deployment and perhaps fixed wireless access to ensure connectivity for the more expensive, harder to reach areas of that community).

Another potential solution could be via low earth orbit (LEO) satellite constellations such as Starlink* or OneWeb. The UK Government’s Alpha Trials programme is currently supporting research into whether this could provide an effective and economically viable solution for hard to reach areas.

While this is still currently a relatively pricey solution for consumers in terms of the hardware and monthly service charges, costs are likely to come down in the near future as more and more companies – including Amazon and Facebook – enter the new race for space, all vying for a piece of the mega constellation pie.

So, while full fibre is still the preferred option, we are looking at potential alternatives for where full fibre is unlikely to be an economically viable solution to try and ensure that we can all benefit from lightning-fast connectivity in the coming years.

*If you know of anyone who is currently using a low earth orbit satellite solution – such as Starlink – in the Warwickshire / Solihull area, please encourage them to share their experiences / opinions of using this system by emailing us at

Case studies needed – Tell us your story!

If having faster broadband has made a real difference to your life or business, why not tell us about it by submitting a case study.

We regularly appeal for case studies but sadly very few people respond. All we need are a few lines telling us of the difficulties you experienced before you had faster broadband and how life has improved since your property was upgraded.

We would also like to hear from you if your property has not yet benefited from an upgrade. Again, all we need are a few lines telling us of the difficulties you are experiencing and how this is impacting on your household.

Submitting a case study, whether relaying a positive or negative experience, can be really useful in supporting our applications for additional funding, to help us take the fibre network to those in areas that are still waiting to experience the benefits of a faster broadband connection.

Copy for your own website or newsletter

As always, we have a range of short articles of around 300 words that can be downloaded for use in your own newsletters / websites should you wish to use them.

Your questions answered

Here are some of the Questions and Answers (Q&A’s) that residents have raised recently. Our website has a full set of Frequently Asked Questions, which are regularly updated.

Once an upgrade is complete, will I automatically get a faster service?

No. You must order an improved broadband package through your chosen Internet Service Provider (ISP) to take advantage of the faster speeds. This is what we suggest you do.

First of all, enter your landline or address into the BT Broadband Availability Checker.

If your property has been upgraded to superfast broadband via a Fibre to the Cabinet (FTTC) solution, then ‘VDSL Range A & B’ will be listed under ‘Featured Products’ along with the speeds you are likely to achieve.

If your property has been upgraded to ultrafast broadband via a Fibre to the Premise (FTTP) solution, then ‘WBC FTTP’ will be listed under ‘Featured Products’ column.

Our How to use the BT Broadband Availability Checker webpage will help you make sense of these results.

Then use one of the many broadband comparison sites available online (such as those listed below) to find and order the right package at the right price for your household or business:

Broadband Choices, Broadband Finder, Broadband Genie, BroadbandProviders,, Choose, Comparethemarket, MoneySuperMarket, Uswitch and Which?

The ordering process is slightly different if your property has benefited from an FTTP upgrade. Our Ordering an FTTP service webpage provides you with information on the installation process and also includes a list of ISPs who state that they offer residential and / or business packages in all or parts of the CSW region.

Can CSW influence how much ISPs charge for their services?

Unfortunately, we have no influence over the prices charged by commercial providers for internet services. Our role is to extend the wholesale fibre network as far as possible, and we are doing this through the contracts that we hold with Openreach.

As access to the network is available to all suppliers on an equal basis it is a purely commercial decision on the part of an ISP as to which packages they offer and at which price range.

The best thing is to shop around for a deal that is right for you. Please remember that some price comparison sites work by receiving a commission from the ISPs and may not list all of the available options. Therefore, you may want to try several such sites before making a decision.

A number of websites, including, Usave and Which? provide useful advice on how to haggle for the best broadband deals which will hopefully help you to save money.

If you are currently struggling to pay your broadband bill,’s Broadband for low income families webpage provides regularly updated information on the social tariffs that are currently available and information to help you find out if you qualify for these.

You can find more frequently asked broadband questions on our website.


This entry was posted in Project News, Newsletter Archive. Bookmark the permalink. Both comments and trackbacks are currently closed.