Scotland's Full Fibre Charter: Axione case study

Scotland’s Full Fibre Charter signatory Axione case study.

Scotland’s Full Fibre Charter consists of a series of pledges to help extend full fibre broadband across Scotland. Founded in France in 2003, Axione entered the UK market in 2019 with an initial pilot deployment in Scotland. Since then, Axione has begun rolling out its first UK full fibre networks in Scotland, with a focus on connecting small towns and villages not included in other commercial operator build plans.

Axione was one of the first companies to sign the Full Fibre Charter when it launched in 2020. In seeking to extend coverage to rural premises on the fringes of its deployments, Axione is supporting the aims of Scotland’s Full Fibre Charter by going further with commercial build projects, delivering greater coverage and ensuring more homes and businesses can enjoy the benefits of full fibre connectivity.

Extending coverage to rural premises on the fringes of towns and villages

Axione’s approach to deployment in Scotland draws heavily on its decade-long experience in the French rural fibre market – where their rural deployment of fibre has focused not just on towns and isolated villages, but also on the surrounding homes and farms.

In Scotland, this translates into an approach characterised by flexibility when it comes to commercial deployment – remaining alive to opportunities to extend coverage to more challenging locations outside any other commercial suppliers’ build plans. 

Connecting Law, Carluke

One example of Axione’s approach to deployment is their full fibre network build in the village of Law, Carluke, when, in collaboration with the local community, Axione overcame several deployment challenges to extend their full fibre network to homes and businesses beyond the edges of the original build plan.

In one case, following discussions with residents, Axione was able to extend one section of the new network by an extra 300m to catch an additional four premises, including a farm, and all of which had been struggling with poor connectivity.

Also on the outskirts of Law, Axione discovered an opportunity to connect an additional 30 homes to their network, which, owing to the existing infrastructure and geography, would not be a straightforward undertaking. Following more extensive surveys of the area, and interactions with residents and the local authority, Axione discovered that through the careful placement of five new poles they would be able to reach an additional 30 premises. The placement of the poles had to be done in such a way to limit visual impact, and despite the additional cost, extended full fibre coverage to a small pocket of homes not included in the build plans of any supplier.

Again in Law, for a customer living in an even more demanding location, Axione was able to make use of the Scottish Government’s Reaching 100% Scottish Broadband Voucher Scheme (R100 SBVS) to support the extension of a section of their fibre network by over 600m along a rural track.

Overall, Axione estimate that by going beyond connecting the easiest and least-costly premises, they have been able to extend full fibre coverage by 20 – 30% in the areas they have been active, picking up small clusters of premises, and in some cases single isolated properties, in the process.

In adopting this approach, Axione is supporting the aims of Scotland’s Full Fibre Charter by seeking out opportunities to expand coverage to more challenging locations beyond the boundaries of their network builds, further extending the benefits of full fibre broadband.

"Axione have been simply fantastic, from the initial survey through to installation. Updated at every step. Engineers were very helpful and informative. We had problem with a duct, not an Axione issue, but they persevered and now have fibre to the premises. What a difference to gaming and downloads." Kenneth Paton, local resident

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