Leeds seeks £20m partner for full-fibre network

Local authority looks to award seven-year contract with right of use guaranteed for a quarter of a century

Credit: Lynne Cameron/PA Archive/PA Images

Leeds City Council is seeking a commercial partner to design and install a city-wide full-fibre network.

The authority has published a contract notice inviting bids for a deal worth an estimated £21.1m to the chosen firm. The supplier will be asked to “to design and implement a full-fibre gigabit-capable network to the council and partner buildings across the Leeds metropolitan district”.

The underlying infrastructure will connect about 1,400 sites across the city, the council said. Users will be supported by a managed service provided by the winning bidder.

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Leeds will award an initial seven-year deal covering design, deployment, and ongoing support, with an optional three-year extension. Additionally, the council requires a deal guaranteeing its “indefeasible right of use” of the network for the next 25 years.

The city revealed its intention to roll out a full-fibre network earlier this year, shortly before the council’s executive board approved the plan.

At the time, councillor James Lewis, the authority’s executive member for resource and sustainability, said: “The council has set out a clear ambition for Leeds to be recognised as a leading digital city, and if we are to achieve this goal, it is vitally important that we ensure that the very best infrastructure and technology is in place… This will not only provide more public sector organisations such as the council, NHS and our schools with an opportunity to develop new and better ways in how they work and learn, but also provide vitally, more of our residents and businesses in currently badly served areas with an opportunity to enjoy the many benefits of easy, full access to full-fibre connectivity.”


Sam Trendall

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