now at the end of the TV antenna?

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Well-known member
Jul 17, 2023
Been too much thinking and not enough doing here in the UK. We've had a very short sighted view of the internet and technology, until very recently and it's now far too expensive to dig up the pavements and get everyone on FTTP. I've worked for ISPs and there was massive inertia many years ago and if the ISPs and BT had got their heads together about 20 years ago, we could now have world class, high speed internet to most of the country. I think they've realised it's now a case of getting the most out of fibre, where it exists and then increasing 5G bandwidth elsewhere. I'll never get FTTP and as I mentioned, the copper network is shocking where I live. The GPO pits are 50 years old and full of water and corrosion. Apart from new builds, there will be no replacement of the copper lines, here in the UK. All the PSTN/ISDN is being phased out. All the copper will be replaced by fibre eventually, but it will need some help from the government and taxation, to really improve things.
Why would they have to dig up the pavement over there? Are the cables buried under the streets?


Well-known member
Jul 31, 2008
It varies around where I live.
Many houses are fed by under-pavement fibre.
Others get overhead fibre from existing telegraph poles - but, even then, pavements have been dug up to get fibre up the poles.

It will vary depending on the provider, and what existing infrastructure is available.

Openreach (BT Group) as the incumbent open access network provider are legally obliged to share their poles and ducts via their Passive Infrastructure Access scheme, which many providers will use if possible, as it's far quicker, cheaper and less disruptive than building out their own.

Even where infrastructure is available via PIA the altnets will have to do some ducting to break in Openreach's existing infrastructure to feed the cables to and from the altnets cabinets etc etc.

As an example Virgin Media expanded to my area last summer/autum and used existing poles and ducts where available via Openreach PIA, but there was a few areas built in the 70s by BT that used direct buried cables, leaving VM no choice but to install their own infrastructure, where they used Microtrenching because again it's cheaper, quicker and less disruptive than traditional trenching and ducting techniques
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Well-known member
Aug 5, 2021
Why would they have to dig up the pavement over there? Are the cables buried under the streets?
I remember CableTel, the forerunner of Virgin digging up every pavement in the 80s to lay fibre cables to every house. It was Prime Minister Thatcher's idea to bring competition into the marketplace as British Telecom had the monopoly over telecommunications. BT was formed when the GPO (General Post Office) was split between postal services and telephone provider. Now BT is laying fibre cables to replace copper cables to increase Internet speed.


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