Press Release

Rural full-fibre specialist County Broadband has announced the appointment of NGE as its civil engineering partner to lead the multi-million-pound investment in digital infrastructure in Norfolk.

County Broadband is building fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) infrastructure to 55 rural communities in Norfolk, including the Breckland, Broadland, South Norfolk and North Norfolk areas. A total of 20,000 rural premises will benefit from access to gigabit speeds and superior network reliability.

Earlier this year, County Broadband announced that it had secured a further £100 million in private investment from Aviva Investors to extend its full-fibre rollout towards its target of 500,000 rural premises in the East of England by the end of 2027. This has brought the total private investment to £146 million, following the £46m secured from Aviva Investors in 2018.

The Essex-based alternative network provider (alt-net), founded in 2003, is designing and building FTTP networks in over 250 villages in Norfolk, Essex, Suffolk, and Cambridgeshire as part of a long-term commitment to digitally future-proof the region.

County Broadband specialises in building and connecting rural communities to full fibre broadband, offering speeds of up to 900 Mbps to each and every customer on their network. Often this is in areas that have been overlooked by the more traditional broadband providers.

The partnership with NGE will create new jobs in the region and support the growth of local SMEs in the supply chain as the new networks are built and delivered.

NGE is a civil engineering contractor based in France and operating worldwide. It was appointed to its first UK FTTP build in Liverpool in February 2021.

Lloyd Felton, Founder and Chief Executive of County Broadband, said: “To deliver our exciting plans to digitally future-proof rural Norfolk with gigabit full-fibre speeds, we need committed and skilled build partners who care about our local communities as much as we do.

“With NGE, we have found the perfect partner to support and drive our rollout in Norfolk, given their rich heritage and proven track record of delivering significant infrastructure projects across a diverse range of sectors and environments.

“We look forward to continuing to build momentum with our full-fibre broadband plans in Norfolk as we invest in the future of rural communities. Demand for faster and more reliable broadband continues to soar and the aspirations of tomorrow will soon become the needs of today.

“Building full-fibre infrastructure in rural areas at this scale is a complex task. Each project is bespoke and requires significant planning and resources, as well as the coordination of local authorities and highways, landowners and other agencies. That’s why the sooner we start, the sooner residents and businesses in rural areas can start enjoying all the benefits of full-fibre.”

Scott Bicknell, UK Managing Director at NGE, said: “NGE is thrilled to collaborate with County Broadband as well as local communities and stakeholders. This project gives us the opportunity to deliver our mission of interacting with communities and leaving digital legacies.

“We are fully committed to combining field experience with functional expertise to build these new networks which will have a positive social and economic impact, whilst enabling us to invest in the local economy and discover the local talent pools.”

The government has set a flagship target to deliver nationwide gigabit-capable speeds in the UK by 2030 to boost economic growth.

Full-fibre broadband uses fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) infrastructure where fibre optic cables are installed directly into the premises, providing download and uploads speeds of 1,000 Mbps. It replaces fibre-to-the-cabinet (FTTC) copper-based infrastructure on which ‘Superfast’ is based.

Residents and businesses can check if they are covered in County Broadband’s rollout by entering their postcode at