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Broadband in Newton & Bywell

LiveWave Broadband with Wildcard

Wireless Broadband with Livewave

BT Open Reach is unlikely to have any impact for our residents for many years. Fibre to the cabinet still leaves us too far away to receive their service. Fibre to the home is very expensive and we are not seen as a priority area.
Following the successful application for a grant The Big Lottery Village SOS in 2012  we formed a partnership with Wildcard to provide us with wireless broadband - this has been in place since 2013 with an excellent service record.
We now have over 50 households and 5 businesses who have had Livewave broadband installed by paying for their own installation fees of £150. Working in partnership with Wildcard Networks, we have installed equipment at North Acomb Farm  and Mowden and we all areas around the Parish now serviceable .
The packages  available are
upto 10Mbps - £19.95 p.m
upto 20Mbps - £24.95 p.m 
upto 30Mbps - £29.95 p.m.
Residents who want to participate need to complete an order form and direct debit mandate. 
These forms can be remitted electronically to leejohnston@wildcard.net.uk but hard copies will need to be forwarded by mail as quickly as possible.
Please find below available for download the following documents 

Terms & Conditions
Router Specification
Order form
Direct Debit
Northumberland County Council
They  have now issued their local broadband plan - it can be found the www.inorthumberland.org.uk site.


Rural families with poor broadband will be given cash vouchers worth hundreds of pounds to spend on their own internet providers under plans being drawn up by Number 10. 

Senior Government sources have become convinced “sleepy” BT is failing to innovate and want a major shake-up to encourage smaller broadband providers. 

It is hoped families in remote communities will group together and spend their vouchers on experimental providers, such as one which installs WiFi satellites onto church spires. 

The proposals are being worked up by Theresa May’s team for a Green Paper on competition in consumer markets to be published next spring. 

Ofcom, the telecoms regulator, revealed on Friday that a quarter of all properties in rural areas – close to a million in total - still do not have decent broadband. 

Steve Unger, Ofcom’s group director, said it was “unacceptable” that so many people were struggling to get broadband and urged ministers to improve coverage in the countryside. 

The Telegraph is running a Better Broadband campaign to highlight the damaging impact poor internet coverage is having on families and businesses in rural communities. 

The Government has proposed that every Briton should have the legal right to request access to internet speeds of 10mbps by 2020. 

However there are still 1.4 million homes and offices across Britain – equivalent to 5 per cent off all properties – without broadband that quick.


Whitehall figures are concerned that BT, which has an effective monopoly on installing fibre broadband connections in much of the country, will not connect rural communities quick enough. 

They are therefore preparing radical steps to help smaller providers, including handing cash vouchers to families to buy broadband from whoever they choose. 

“There a whole load of these insurgent providers using different technologies and they are not relying on fibre,” a senior Whitehall source said. 

“I can imagine 500 houses in a village and they’ve all got their voucher. The parish council comes together and says ‘we will hear from five providers and choose one of them’.”

WiSpire, a broadband provider part-owned by the Church of England, is one innovative firm that has impressed government figures. 

The company connects church towers with WiFi to bring broadband to areas too remote to get internet through more routine means. 

The vouchers idea – the specifics of which are still being worked out – fits with similar schemes unveiled by Mrs May putting the benefits of economic growth in the hands of voters. 

The Prime Minister has already proposed some of the money made from fracking or building major housing estates is given directly to those households affected. 

A similar voucher broadband scheme was introduced for businesses in December 2013 but ended last year, with around 55,000 vouchers issued in total. 

Matt Warman, chairman of the broadband All-Party Parliamentary Group, said: “If the details are done properly it is genuinely transformation for the most isolated communities.” 

Matt Hancock, the digital and culture minister, said yesterday: "High speed broadband and good mobile connectivity are no longer a 'nice to have', but a modern necessity, and we will not rest until they are delivered."

May 2016

Rural broadband 'by request only'

Written by  Ruralcity Media

FASTER broadband connections will not be automatically rolled out to isolated rural areas, the government has confirmed.

Instead, rural homes and businesses will have to request connections – a process which could involve a four-year wait.

Confirmation that broadband would be supplied on a request-only basis came as telecoms giant BT said it was investing £6bn on Superfast Broadband Roll-out and 4G.

BT has reported that at least 10m homes and businesses are to get ultrafast broadband through a combination of fibre and copper technology called G.fast.

The company is to invest £6bn in improving its services, including extending superfast broadband and 4G coverage to more than 95% of the UK by 2020.

But the Countryside Alliance warned that more must be done in rural areas to ensure the "final 5%" were not disadvantaged.

Alliance head of policy Sarah Lee said: "We welcome the announcement but must still point out that the improvement figure will only extend to 95% of areas.

"While this is good news, we cannot have a 95% service for 100% need.

"There must also be a clear commitment and delivery of broadband to those households and businesses in rural areas who are in the "final 5%" that won't be covered by this investment.

"If we want the countryside to compete economically and socially then we need assurances and urgent action so that hard working rural businesses and families are not disadvantaged."

The decision not to roll out faster rural broadband automatically was reported in a front-page story in the Daily Telegraph.

In a letter to the newspaper, digital economy minister Ed Vaizey insisted the commitment for everyone in the UK to have access to fast broadband remained firmly in place.

"Nothing has been abandoned," he said.

"We are giving every home and business the legal right to request fast broadband, helping make sure no communities are left behind."

Reaching the least accessible parts of the UK was of course more expensive, said Mr Vaizey.

""It makes sense for broadband to be provided on request to those who want it – in the same way that telephone lines are provided."

Monday, 25 April 2016 10:12

Concern at broadband proposal costs

Written by  Ruralcity Media

Government plans for faster broadband threaten to impose an unfair cost on rural residents, says the Rural Services Network.

The warning is contained in response to a broadband consultationby the Department for Culture, Media and Sport.

The DCMS consultation is seeking views on a new broadband Universal Service Obligation (USO).

The government says the USO will give people the right to an affordable broadband connection, at a minimum speed, from a designated provider, up to a reasonable cost threshold.

But the network said: "We are very concerned with the proposal to make the USO entirely demand-led and not to have a successor to the Superfast Broadband Programme."

Hard-to-reach – mainly rural – premises would cost more to connect with broadband networks, which justified public sector intervention, said the network.

But it warned: "The focus of public funding for broadband should be (and always should have been) hard-to-reach areas, rather than commercially marginal areas."

Although details were yet to be worked out, it seemed clear that the proposed approach would place a large part of the USO cost onto consumers in currently unconnected areas.

"It would introduce a significant cost-penalty for consumers living or working in very rural areas," said the network's response to the consultation.

It added: "This seems to fly in the face of the promise that the USO would provide broadband connections at a reasonable cost."

The network said it was also "very unclear" how practical a demand-led USO would be to deliver.

"Given that the rest of the USO connection cost would fall on a network provider, the question arises how would providers be forced to deliver in the most rural areas?

"It seems inevitable that they will be unwilling and will seek ways to avoid delivery in the highest cost rural areas."

The network said it therefore believed that there must be a successor to the Superfast Broadband Programme as part of introducing any USO.

"This would avoid there being an unacceptable cost-penalty for rural consumers and would ensure that providers are willing to deliver on the USO in rural areas.

Although a USO was welcome in principle, the network said an entirely demand-led proposal was flawed and unfair.

"As it stands, the USO would only seem to give the right to ask for a broadband connection. We very much hope that the proposal will therefore be looked at again."

The network's full response to the consultation can be seen here. The consultation closed on 23 March and the government is now analysing submissions.