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Welcome to the Abthorpe Broadband Association, which is a non-profit making community project aimed at bringing high-speed Internet connection to this rural area.

History
Abthorpe Broadband Association (ABbA) is a not-for-profit company which has provided broadband service to the villages of Abthorpe and Slapton since 2003. This experience and our interaction with the communities over the issue of faster services has culminated in the provision of a superfast service – a minimum 30Mbps download and upload, with some direct fibre-optic connections running at over 800Mbps.

In 2003, data services in Abthorpe were only available on dial-up modems. BT had no published plans to bring broadband via ADSL to the local exchange, Silverstone. The solution adopted was to install a satellite link to the village from a service provider in Belgium. This service operated at 1.5Mbps download; 256Kbps upload, and was distributed by 2.4GHz wireless to homes throughout the village and to the adjacent village of Slapton. The service proved popular and was quickly expanded to over 40% penetration. Much experience has been gained in the distribution of wireless signals around the villages and the problems inherent in this type of network are now well understood.

BT enabled ADSL on Silverstone exchange in 2006 and advantage was taken of that to replace the satellite feed with three separate ADSL lines. This change provided a welcome boost to capacity as, with the gradual introduction of new online services, demand from users was growing. This configuration has operated successfully ever since. However, in today’s world, the service offered speeds well below those required to sustain the expectations demanded of broadband services.

Superfast Broadband
In 2013 government monies were made available to improve broadband services so we took advantage of this.
We canvassed our neighbouring villages successfully and created a completely new project - Tove Valley Communities Superfast Broadband.
The project cost £250,000 we got a £108,000 grant to lay fibre-optic cables between 6 villages; Abthorpe, Bradden, Lois Weedon, Slapton, Wappenham and Weston. With a direct fibre-optic connection to London and the internet, each village has a 1,000Mbps broadband service. Using advanced wireless communications, we have now enabled the whole of the upper Tove valley for superfast broadband.  This includes 9 villages/hamlets and the surrounding farms etc.

Our broadband service enables you to watch i-Player and similar streaming TV and film services, telephone and video services and cloud services as well as making web browsing much faster. It should mean that we can keep up with all the advances in broadband for many years to come.

Membership of the Tove Valley Broadband reached 480 in May 2016 and we estimate that around about 5pm each afternoon, there are more than 3,000 devices connected to the network.

You can read more on the dedicated Tove Valley website www.tovevalley.com

Radio Northampton interviewed Eric twice about our Superfast Broadband plans.  
Listen to the first broadcast here.
Listen to the second broadcast here

Our MP - Andrea Leadsom, asked a question in the House of Commons which related to our project here in the Tove Valley
Listen to her question here
Listen to the whole session here (10 minutes)

For all the latest information about our Superfast Broadband plans go to our dedicated website here.

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