Fibre is coming to Lois Weedon, Weston and Plumpton.
We have all benefitted from the remarkable Community Project we know as Tove Valley Broadband.
You are all aware that the ABbA organisation is constantly looking at ways to keep ahead technologically with the increasing demand for its services.
Most recently we have seen a huge increase in capacity with the faster links, anticipating the continued growth in demand.
The next major improvement is the replacement of the radio transmission system by direct Fibre connection to the premises, known as FTTP.
The grapevine will have alerted many of you to the Wappenham Project which commenced almost 12 months ago and is now bearing fruit and is close to completion. This is being funded entirely from government grants and will see every household, small business and remote farm connected for no cost.

It is now the turn of Lois Weedon, Weston and Plumpton.
If you thought your Tove Valley Broadband was quick then be prepared to be blown away by a fibre connection.
If you know people in Wappenham speak to someone who is now connected via fibre.

In order to qualify for a government grant we must have a commitment from a majority of users that they will connect to the fibre.
Currently a residential property is entitled to a grant of up to£1,500 and a small business up to £3,500.
There are 131 TVB members in the parish. Eleven are already connected by fibre. There are a further 42 properties that have no internet or an alternative supplier or are unoccupied or awaiting connection. There may be up to 25 businesses.
You can do the maths.
We need a commitment from a majority of premises to cover the cost of the complete project. It is an important and significant objective to provide every property with the means to connect even if they choose not to avail themselves of the facility.

If you would like to join and get connected, please sign up at www.tovevalley.com/lwandwfibre .
Those who qualify as a small business or sole trader will need to confirm their eligibility. See below.
If you would like more details or would like to volunteer, I will be posting details on the village Website and including a piece in the village newsletter.
Once we have contacted every potential member and we have a significant majority that wish to participate we will work out the required network of connections and the cost of equipment, cables and contracting. We will submit our application for grants to the Department for Culture Media and Sport. We must do this before the end of this year or we will miss the boat.

This is a community project which will require significant involvement of as many volunteers as we can muster. Each household will be expected to arrange for equipment to be installed and cable to be laid to a nearby connecting point.

If Wappenham can do it then so can we. Wappenham have 110-120 connections which cost around £150,000. Well within their grant entitlement.

Eligibility of small business / sole trader status requires you to prove, at the time we apply for grant, that you trade from the address registered.
IF you are a sole trader from your address you will need to provide your UTR number as an attachment on official HMRC documentation.
IF you are a business you will need to supply your Company registration number, VAT number and/or Charity number. If your registration is at another address (e.g. accountant) additional proof of trading from your address will be required (e.g. trade invoices).

One final thing : fibre broadband will highlight any issues you might have with your internal WiFi and network because the service will be better than any house systems can provide. You may well have to consider updating your internal equipment to take advantage of the faster, more reliable internet connection. There are articles in our library to guide you.

Frank Hunter.