Kingston St Mary, Taunton, Somerset, United Kingdom Kingston St Mary, Taunton, Somerset, United Kingdom Kingston St Mary, Taunton, Somerset, United Kingdom


Broadband in Kingston St Mary

The community Broadband group has been set up to tackle the problem of poor broadband quality in parts of Kingston St Mary. The activity of this group has focused initially on identifying areas in the parish with low/unstable broadband speeds and providing suggestions on possible improvements.
Actions taken to date have therefore been to encourage the community to test and record their reception. Subsequently a postcode map of the results has been constructed. This has helped to identify whether issues are internal or external, detect infrastructure issues, and provide data to support cases for individual intervention and community solutions.

Report on developments in KSM

21 June 2018
There have been some developments with the rollout of faster (fibre) broadband in the parish but the pace is very slow and the distribution very thin.

Gigaclear

There has been a Gigaclear leaflet drop in our area. However looking on their website, they still have our postcode area in the "Network Design" phase, which means that from the information available to us its difficult to know when, if at all, they will have the required infrastructure installed in Kingston St Mary enabling them to provide services.

BT Broadband

BT Openreach have been active in the village. It would appear that more Fibre to the Premise (FTTP) services are being installed.
FTTP is where a fibre-optic cable runs directly from the telephone exchange (via a street cabinet) into your home or business. If the cable between the street cabinet and your home/business is a copper cable it's not FTTP but - in the case of KSM - only fibre to the cabinet (FTTC).

If you are able, the best way to progress installation is to contact BT and politely remind them that you wish to improve your broadband service.

Check Availability of faster broadband and check it frequently as Openreach will not tell you when their service is upgraded:
www.homeandbusiness.openreach.co.uk/fibre-broadband/when-can-i-get-fibre
www.btwholesale.com/includes/adsl/adsl.htm?s_cid=ws_furls_adslchecker

General advice

Meanwhile we can supply you with some general advice for the interim to improve broadband service.
If you have queries about this advice or about the rollout of broadband in KSM, contact cp-broadband@kstm.uk.

  1. Call the BT Service desk on '150' and ask for BROADBAND BOOST ENGINEER as they can apply a different profile to your line which may improve your internet speeds.
  2. Change your routers admin password AND wireless key regularly for better security. Log into the router so BT can't alter or monitor your profile. Or, at least change them from the default values.
  3. Optimise internet speed you have by removing competing wiring, which causes 'noise' in your home. By this, we mean, unplug or disconnect any non-essential extension lines you may have, to eliminate sources of signal loss.
  4. For the best internet speeds, plug your wireless router into the BT Master socket. Ideally, this is the only socket you should have, with no extensions. Any 2nd or 3rd handsets required for calls should have their base-station plugged into the BT Master socket, and preferably use wireless technology like DECT to share the phone line between handsets.

4 March 2017
Recently the government allocated a further £1bn to enable the next phase of delivering broadband to rural and remote communities. The published plan sees around £750m being allocated to BT to improve their existing service, and the other £250m going to other companies to deliver service where BT are currently not able, or where the investment plan with BT does not cover a specific geography.

But what does this mean for Kingston St Mary? Well, the supplier in our area who have been approved to augment or replace the BT service is a company called Gigaclear. They are a tech start-up firm who intend to deliver a new 'fibre to the premise' service which will effectively replace BT Broadband. BT are very unlikely to invest farther in our area in the foreseeable future.
The Gigaclear planning phase is almost complete which should finalise the general plan and geographic areas where Gigaclear intend to deliver service. The plan is expected to be made pubic in April 2017. As of March 2017 their website states that our area is under review so I recommend that you register interest via their web site to increase our chances of getting their service earlier.

In order to deliver fibre to the premise, Gigaclear will have to dig up roads, and install new high capacity fibre using local contractors in each area. This is a lengthy process requiring approvals from various local government bodies and agencies, then the actual dig process will be lengthy and disruptive. All in all it's likely to be a few years before we see a Gigaclear service going live in our area, I've heard conservative estimates from the industry that we would likely see the service available in 2020. So in the medium term it's still viable to use a 4G service where BT is currently unable to deliver a service suitable to your needs.

In terms of costs, the Gigaclear service is currently quoted at £42 per month, with around £220 installation and activation fee. This has gone up since December so may not yet be the price we pay. This would deliver a service providing up to 50 Mbps upload and download. It's not clear whether this is a contended (shared) service where you share that 50Mbps with other households, or if it's all yours.

On the topic of CDS vouchers, there are rumours that the CDS scheme may open again in April to new applicants. CDS vouchers can be used for 4G service installations and they are likely to also be redeemable against the installation and activation fees for a Gigaclear service when this becomes available. Though it's not clear at this point whether CDS vouchers will expire before Gigaclear are ready to deliver service.

So in conclusion, if you want fast and reliable broadband and you can't wait another 3 years, I recommend signing up with Exmoor Tech at their website. With a CDS Voucher, a site survey at your home is free, and the installation covers almost all of the setup costs.
Greg Ewing

20 January 2017
Research has been undertaken by the Broadband team of the Community Plan Steering Group to compare the services provided, which was shared with you at a meeting at the Village Hall on 19 January 2017. Read the info leaflet »
Please email the Broadband team at broadband@kstm.uk if you have questions about these initiatives.

3 December 2016
Connecting Devon and Somerset has committed to bringing broadband to everyone within the programme area. If you are not yet able to receive broadband speeds of over 2Mbps you may be able to get connected through the CDS voucher scheme. Unfortunately the scheme was terminated on 1 December 2016. Voucher scheme Connecting Devon and Somerset

10 December 2016 Research has been undertaken by the Broadband team of the Community Plan Steering Group to compare the services provided. It will be shared with the public at a meeting on 19 January 2017.
Download presentation (pdf) »

Slow broadband speed has been widely reported as a problem in Kingston St Mary. There are various factors that determine your broadband speed.
One of them is your home telephone wiring and router. We have written a short guide on how to check if your connection is in good working order.
Download manual (pdf) »