UK broadband: Openreach officially hits another major rollout milestone

Fibre optics
(Image credit: Daniel Chetroni / Getty Images)

Openreach, one of the main UK broadband network providers, has announced it has hit a 'huge milestone' in its upgrading of the nation's broadband infrastructure, with ultrafast Full Fibre connections now available to 10 million homes and businesses. 

The news has been heralded by Openreach as a 'huge achievement' and the 10 millionth build itself occurred as its gigabit-capable, Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) technology was rolled out to 900 more properties in the village of Ketton in Rutland, East Midlands. 

As a result, this means millions more of us can now access a wider choice of faster broadband packages, such as those available in our guide to the best broadband deals

An ongoing £15bn project

This latest update is also one which demonstrates the overall progress Openreach is making with its network upgrades, as this forms part of a wider £15bn project to cover upwards of 25 million properties by December 2026. This is equivalent to around 80% of the total premises in the country.

According to wider reports, the Openreach's current build rate is around '62,000 premises per week' and since December 2022 nearly half a million more homes and businesses have been reached to hit the 10 million mark.

However, the same reports suggest that Openreach will 'need to keep ramping-up their build' at a rate of 74,000 a week, in order to hit the 2026 targets. 

How Full Fibre can benefit broadband users

In addition to offering properties broadband that can reach speeds in excess of 1,000Mbps, the FTTP network is also said to be more reliable and secure than older and slower fibre and copper cabling. This is something Openreach says will meet 'the demands of modern life' and the UK's increasing data demands that it claims have doubled since 2020.

Speaking about the milestone and the rollout's benefits, Openreach's CEO, Clive Selley, said: 

“Today marks a significant milestone in our transformation of the UK’s broadband. Not only will access to Full Fibre technology improve the speed and reliability of the internet connections used by people, businesses and public services, it also provides us with the infrastructure we need to meet the demands of an increasingly digital world. With this upgrade, we can improve the lives of people in the UK, offering economic opportunities, alleviating social challenges and creating the foundation for life-changing technology. 

“Now we’re focused on the next phase of our build. Our engineers are building rapidly across the country and we already have plans in place that will see Full Fibre broadband reach over 25 million premises. We’re excited for the future that Full Fibre will create for everybody across the UK.” 

Alongside this, Openreach gave several specific examples of the advantages of Full Fibre including:

  • connecting 9,000 medical facilities
  • 11,000 leisure and amenities buildings
  • 13,500 educational facilities
  • the potential to create more than 400,000 remote jobs
  • a £72bn 'productivity boost'

How to check if you can access ultrafast broadband

If you've yet to make the most of gigabit-capable broadband there are a few ways you can firstly find a new package and then check if your property is eligible to receive it. 

You can find an ultrafast broadband deal by entering your postcode into our widget below to see what's on offer near you, before then contacting the provider directly. Alternatively, Openreach encourages consumers to use its 'Fibre Checker' to see if its rollout has reached your location yet. 

If it is the case that you can't yet access these speeds, you can often register your interest to receive updates about when the rollout will be heading to your area.

Richard Hart

Rich is a freelance copywriter and content strategist with over 10 years' experience. His career has seen him work in-house and in various agencies, producing online and offline content marketing campaigns and copywriting for clients in the energy industry.