HOPES that some of Powys’ most isolated areas could get speedier internet hang in the balance after the broadband provider tasked with implementing the networks was placed in administration.

Broadway Partners has been working on eight community schemes in the county with the aim of bringing ultrafast fibre connections to more homes in rural areas. It had also been expected to become the supplier for several others that were still at the stage of assessing demand.

The only community broadband scheme in the county where homes have been connected to ultrafast fibre so far by Broadway Partners is Aberedw and Glascwm, near Builth Wells.

Customers in this area have been advised by the company and its administrators, Teneo, that its network is still functioning and its usual customer service channels remain open.

The other communities in Powys that Broadway Partners has been working with are Llanafan Fawr and Llanwrthwl, near Builth and Rhayader respectively, Dwyriw and Manafon, near Welshpool, Llangunllo and Whitton, near Presteigne and Knighton, as well as Nantmel, Rhayader, New Radnor and Painscastle.


Powys County Council says it is keeping a close eye on developments. There are hopes that a buyer may be found during the administration process, but, if necessary, the council will look to work with the affected communities to source an alternative provider.

“While the situation with Broadway Partners evolves, there may be delays or changes to currently planned projects in the county,” said Councillor Jake Berriman, the council’s cabinet member for a Connected Powys.

“We will do all we can as a supporter of these schemes to minimise disruption and remain committed to securing reliable, high-speed connectivity for as many of our communities as possible.

“Delivering improved digital access to rural homes and businesses remains a key part of our plans to build a stronger, fairer and greener Powys.”

With the news, the growing financial strain on Britain's army of fibre broadband infrastructure providers has claimed its first casualty, with the rural network builder operating in Scotland and Wales since being launched in 2016.

The company had set an ambitious target of connecting 250,000 homes and businesses by 2025.

County Times:  Rural broadband projects in Powys are now under threat following the news Rural broadband projects in Powys are now under threat following the news

Benji Dymant, joint administrator at Teneo, said: “Following significant investment in ultrafast full fibre broadband, the sector has been facing into a number of adverse macroeconomic issues, including raising interest rates and inflation, in a highly competitive environment.

“Despite having successfully connected a range of outlying communities to its network, Broadway has not been immune to the impact of these issues.

“As a result, it's been necessary to file for administration to facilitate a restructure of the business and provide a stable platform to affect a sale.”

Anyone in the Powys communities affected, who has questions about their community broadband schemes, should contact broadband@powys.gov.uk.