Town speeds up - but some still miss out

MOST of Daventry now has access to high speed broadband, but there are still some blackholes.

In January, BT announced it had upgraded the town’s phone exchange, bringing superfast broadband to the town.

But an investigation by the Daventry Express showed that addresses on Middlemore, the Grange, Lang Farm, Ashby Fields and Timken estate still had no high speed access.

Seven months on, the situation has improved with most homes on the Grange and Ashby Fields able to access superfast speeds and homes on Lang Farm set to be connected from the end of the month.

However, addresses on Timken and Middlemore still can’t access the service, and BT provides no expected date on its website either.

Although the precise availability varies from house to house, the results indicate the areas where roadside phone cabinets have not been upgraded.

The upgrades involve running fibre optic cables from the exchange, in Badby Road, to the green roadside phone cabinets.

Tamlyn Coleman, from Middlemore, has researched his estate’s poor broadband.

He said: “You can see when BT does work on the cabinets.

“We saw them working on the one outside the hotel at the entrance to Lang Farm, but there doesn’t seem to be any more to put a fibre through to the one at the entrance to Middlemore, which is just a few hundred yards.

“The rumour is that we won’t get it because the estate was designed for the optical fibres to come straight to every home. That’s a lot faster, but more expensive and probably a way off.”

Giving every home access to high speed broadband by 2015 is a goal of Northamptonshire County Council.

County Cllr Chris Long represents both of the town’s broadband ‘not spots’. He said: “Broadband is the future. Every property, in residential or business areas needs to have access to the highest possible speeds. Without it Daventry will not be a progressive town and won’t be able to thrive.

“I am talking to Andre Gonzales de Savage, the county council cabinet member leading the broadband project. It’s not going to be easy or quick to solve.”