Digital Connectivity

The ambition for South Essex is that every household, business and community facility, has access to affordable full fibre digital connectivity by 2025.

The digital programme is focused on four key themes.

Full Fibre Coverage by 2025: Through continued market stimulation and investment, leveraging the deployed full fibre network wherever possible.

Expanding Mobile Coverage: Engage with mobile operators to make South Essex attractive for investment, improve 4G coverage and capacity and expand 5G coverage, leveraging the investment in the full fibre network wherever possible.

Improving Public Service: Utilise our 200km of full fibre network for the benefit of the public sector across South Essex to drive down costs and open up innovation through shared infrastructure and shared digital services.

Opening up Access for All: Ensure digital inclusion across South Essex making ‘decent’ broadband not just available to all but affordable for all and ensuring everyone has the basic digital skills to make use of this connectivity.

South Essex Councils (SEC) secured a £4.4million broadband boost enabling the rollout of Full Fibre broadband infrastructure across south Essex which will enable providers to deliver some of the fastest connections in the country to residents and businesses.

This was the result of a successful bid to the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS). That has funded work to lay over 130km of full fibre across south Essex, digitally connecting 129 public sector sites including schools, GP surgeries and care homes at the very highest speeds available. This was completed, on time and on budget in May 2021.

This proved so successful that an extra £2.5million in government funding was awarded to add another 100 connections and an additional 75km of fibre infrastructure to enable ASELA to install over 200km of full fibre, stretching from Purfleet-on-Thames in the west to Great Stambridge in the east.

SEC full fibre infrastructure map, Nov 22
Progress to date: the SEC full fibre infrastructure, Nov 22

Long Range Wide Area Network (LoRaWAN) ‘5G Network’

The SEC Digital Programme has secured funding from Highways England to deliver a SEC-wide IOT long range wide area network (LoRaWAN), that fully leverages the SEC Digital Infrastructure and its connectivity into public sector buildings across the region.

Delivery of a SEC IOT LoRaWAN is likely to attract significant investment into the region. It will provide a digital platform to:

  • Support delivery of public services through the deployment of sensors and collection of data across SEC
  • Enable SEC to share data with local businesses.
  • Stimulate digital innovation and economic growth, providing local businesses with a test bed to pilot innovative ideas and solutions that can benefit communities.