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Coverage Data

Been reading this article over at about the public demanding more detailed coverage data be published:

After watching the stream from 16:53 onwards it seems only fair to ask the question to Onlincolnshire:

BT saying that councils are free to publish the data, councils saying that BT hasn't released the data etc

I realise that OnLincolnshire are displaying postcode data down to 6 digits but this doesn't really help when your given a percentage. My area says 65% will get it, 35% won't. The maps are as same all across the UK with different councils. My questions are:

1) What is OnLincolnshire's response to this topic?
2) What are the reasons you aren't displaying 7 digit postcode data? Is it you or BT holding back?

Good Afternoon Matthew,

Thanks for taking time to write to us.

I too watched the Public Accounts Committee interview with a great deal of interest and was left with the impression that BT's description of what can be released was a little unclear.

In answer to your questions, it is probably best if I answer them with one response which hopefully will cover both questions.

When Lincolnshire, along with all the other Local Bodies, signed their contract, we were provided with postcode data by way of a Speed and Coverage Template (SCT) as referred to at the Public Accounts Committee. The SCT provided speed ranges down to 5 figure postcode level only. In addition, it provided coverage data by phases at 7 figure postcode level. LCC subsequently produced a series of maps and a postcode checker on our website. As you know, if you put in your postcode at 7 figure level it will return a 'Phase' with a start and finish date and it will provide % figures of Superfast/non-Superfast. The speed (superfast/non-superfast) part of this message is based on the 5 figure detail in the SCT, but the phasing data is based on the full 7 digit post code data from the SCT.

I can assure you, that Lincolnshire County Council provides as much detail as they have available to them and were in fact, the first council in the UK to provide this level of detail. Sean Williams (BT) mentioned that Local Bodies were free to provide whatever information they wished and alluded to the fact that 2 Local Bodies were providing detail down to 7 figure level. The only data that can be provided at 7 figure level is the coverage data (phases), which we already provide.

When BT carry out detailed surveys immediately prior to the physical implementation of each phase, they will then have a far clearer view of what speeds will be provided and we will be requesting this information when each phase is planned and subject to our getting it, we will immediately update the website to reflect the greater level of available detail.

Please be assured that Lincolnshire County Council are making available all the relevant data they currently hold.

Please do keep in touch and we will update our website as we progress.

Kind regards,

Steve Brookes,
Lincolnshire Broadband Programme Manager
I am a bit bemused on your rollout maps. I live in the village of Welton by Lincoln and was under the impression that the village would be receiving roll out between April and October 2014 (phase 2) which was confirmed by your post code checker. I have today checked my post code again and found my post code area has now been transferred to phase three (July to December) but post codes surrounding me are still in phase two, how can this be ?. Also when I check on the Openreach post code checker it states that my exchange is to be updated in March, why such a discrepancy ?.
Hello Edward,

Thanks for taking time to write in to us.

In terms of BT's announcement that the Exchange will be upgraded in March, they are referring to their 'Commercial rollout' (Business as usual) and not to this project.

The phasing has changed slightly due to the remodelling work that was undertaken following the injection of additional funding.

However, I can tell you that we are currently working on the cabinets in Welton and expect a number of them to be live as early as 31st March, due to better than expected progress. If you would please be kind enough to provide your telephone number to us (in confidence, via the 'contact us' section of the websire) we will check which cabinet feeds your property and be able to give a much clearer view.

Kind regards,

Steve Brookes,
Lincolnshire Broadband Programme Manager
Hi Edward, hope you got the answer you were looking for.

I live over the road at scampton and we too are in phase 2 with BT predicting march.

I noticed two BT vans parked on the scampton layby at the cabinet on Thursday at 9am. I was heading south and saw a BT crane heading opposite way presumably towards scampton.

Unfortunately about an hour later the road got closed due to a lorry full of volvos tipping over! Dunno if that delayed anything as didn't notice a difference other than cones laid the night before on the grass verge had gone!

Would be interested to know scampton progress! (Owen/Steven?) I'm served by cabinet no4

for those interested you can find your cabinet by going to BT DSL checker and putting your phone number in

Also according to Welton is having some work done by BT to remove old cabling at the junction with the A15 in about a week IIRC
Hi Nathan, thanks for your post.

I have used your link with regard to finding which cabinet feeds my property and it comes up as cabinet 6 in Welton. I am not sure where the cabinet is located as I only know of two in the village, one next to the co op and one across the road on the village green (opp Black Bull). I sent my telephone number in via the "contact us" link to Steve about a week ago and am still waiting a reply. According to the post code checker we are in "phase 3" even though the rest of the village is down for "phase 2" like Scampton. I have seen quite a lot of openreach vans out and about the area and am aware of cabinet changes taking place. As usual I expect it will come when it comes as targets (Openreach and Onlincolnshire) seem to be in months rather than specific dates. It has always amazed me why Lincoln was cabled many years ago (1995/6 if I remember) but Virgin (Diamond cable/NTL) never did venture into larger villages like Welton or Nettleham where they would have had a good uptake.
Well first of all thanks to Steve and Owen for their swift response to me via email (mere hours!) I understand they were having technical issues their end regarding this forum/emails so you may want to ping them again.

I saw a big reel of cable on the A15 yesterday between Sampton and Lincoln which matches Steve's info.

I had to go to to Welton Drs yesterday, they do have a new Fibre cabinet there and it's Cabinet no 2.

If you are lucky you can go to your nearest road junction and look for a white stamped number on it. Sometimes they are scratched in or peeled off!

You might be served by a smaller cabinet if you are in one of only a couple of houses on the outskirts of Welton.

If you have had a new cabinet it should be near an old cabinet with the number on it. Look at the ones by the dr's for what the new ones look like

Hope this helps. Hopefully you aren't too far out of Welton to delay your broadband. I can't wait for mine!

Thanks OnLincs!
Nice to see that somewhere in the UK can produce a decent map to illustrate coverage.

Just annoying that it's our neighbors to the north that have managed to create this for the people they cover.

Can OnLincolnshire do better to show other councils that accurate maps can be produced??
Good Afternoon Matthew,

Thanks for writing in.

I believe the subject of maps has arisen previously and it is our opinion that maps are for indication only. Certainly the bigger the area being covered, the less granular the map becomes and therefore, less meaningful.

Having said that, it is the actual postcode data that is relevant and not the map itself. Indeed, ISPreview's comment below would tend to agree with that view.

"As usual the new map only represents tentative data, which is subject to change as BTOpenreach’s engineers survey the areas prior to each phase of the deployment."

We have stated on a number of occasions that we will provide accurate updates as they happen, but maps are purely indicative. In fact, Lincolnshire were, I believe, the first county to provide a coherent postcode checker based upon the level of detail we currently hold.


Steve Brookes
Lincolnshire Broadband Programme Manager
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