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Primary school in Manchester to go ultrafast thanks to grant from BT

Wednesday 26th April, 2017

Primary school in Manchester to go ultrafast thanks to grant from BT

Armitage Church of England Primary School in Ardwick, Manchester, marked a national milestone when it signed the 250th agreement in the UK for BT’s Community Fibre Partnerships (CFP) programme.

The deal includes a £4,900 BT grant to help towards the cost of extensive engineering work to deliver ultrafast broadband for the school.

The CFP programme enables communities to jointly fund an upgrade to fibre broadband alongside Openreach, the local network business which is part of BT Group, if they are not included in any current private or public sector fibre plans.

Eligible communities can apply for a match-funded BT grant of up to £20,000 towards the cost of a new local fibre network, as long as the technology is capable of serving the local school.

Engineers from Openreach will install the latest Fibre to the Premises (FTTP) technology capable of delivering ultrafast speeds up to one gigabit per second (Gbps). The new high-speed technology will offer many benefits for the school and its pupils, including rapid downloading of education materials and seamless online streaming of videos.

Visiting the school to announce the good news, Kieran Charleson, BT’s regional director for the North West, said: “We have been working closely with Armitage Primary School to agree this funding solution to bring ultrafast fibre to the pupils and staff of the school and it’s great news that the contract, the 250th of our CFP programme, has now been signed and the service will be up and running by Spring 2018.

“We’re keen to have conversations with other schools and communities who might be able to benefit from this approach.”

Andrew Curvis, school business manager for Armitage Church of England Primary School, said: “The internet plays an important role in our school today, from students researching projects to developing new computing skills which are vital for their working lives ahead.

“We’re looking forward to seeing the benefits of the new ultrafast link to our students and staff when it goes live next year.”

Kim Mears, Openreach’s managing director for infrastructure delivery, said: “More than 100 communities across the UK are already able to access high-speed fibre broadband through our co-funded Community Fibre Partnerships scheme. We hope that the availability of these grants will encourage even more communities to work with us on bringing high-speed connectivity to their town or village.”

BT’s long term ambition is to help young people in the UK to make the most of technology through initiatives such as the BT Tech Literacy Programme, to inspire them to embrace the role technology plays in their lives.

The Openreach network offers fibre broadband access to service providers on an open, wholesale basis, so local households and businesses have a choice of many different services from hundreds of service providers.

Interested in bringing superfast broadband to your area? Register today with Community Fibre Partnerships and we will be in touch to see how we can help.

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