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Introduction Tim O'Sullivan

John Petter: from telephone to TV...

John Petter, chief executive of BT's Consumer business, tells us how BT Sport and superfast broadband are working out in the UK, as well as his views on a range of other factors affecting his business.

Two thirds of UK fibred 21 months ahead of schedule

BT's fibre network passed more than 19 million homes and businesses in May 2014, 21 months ahead of the original target.

BT recruiting 1600 new engineers

BT recently announced plans for a major recruitment drive across the UK, with 1600 new engineering jobs being created at Openreach, BT's local access network business.

BT, Sky, Virgin Media and TalkTalk launch Internet Matters

BT, Sky, Virgin Media and TalkTalk have just launched Internet Matters, an internet portal that aims to help UK parents keep their children safe online.

Also in this issue...

BT to buy 50 per cent of Welsh energy from new wind farm in Wales

BT is to purchase enough renewable energy from a new Welsh wind farm to match the power consumption of around 50 per cent of its operations in the nation, it was announced today. The company will buy all the electricity generated by the new, nine-turbine Mynydd Bwllfa wind farm near Hirwaun in South Wales. The deal is worth around £100 million over the next 15 years.

The significant Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) supports the construction of the new wind farm, with building work by Pennant Walters (Mynydd Bwllfa) Ltd currently under way. The site will provide enough electricity to match around 50 per cent of BT’s demand in Wales. BT is a major consumer of electricity, using around 110 Gigawatt hours (GWh) per annum in Wales.

BT is one of the UK’s biggest consumers of electricity, and demand for our digital services, including fibre broadband, means the company has to keep innovating to meet our needs in an environmentally responsible way. As well as providing BT with long-term price certainty, this deal underpins the creation of a new wind farm in South Wales, and supports long-term jobs and benefits for the local economy.

BT’s commitment will help to secure long term jobs and continued energy generation at the Mynydd Bwllfa site and is the sort of action I am keen to encourage to help Wales achieve its green growth ambitions.

BT’s sole supplier of renewable energy, npower, has worked closely with the company on the Mynydd Bwllfa project. BT has purchased renewable energy from npower since 2000 and started to source 100 per cent of its electricity in the UK from renewable energy after signing a new agreement with the supplier in 2012.

BT has also secured other PPA contracts, supporting the delivery of ‘New to the Planet’ renewable generation in Lancashire in addition to Wales, and matching 100 per cent of its power consumption in Scotland with energy from a Scottish Borders wind farm.

BT’s Better Future Report for 2013/14 demonstrates the company’s extensive work to put responsible and sustainable business at the heart of its operations. For further information visit

BT ensured UK stayed in the World Cup to the end!

If you watched the World Cup, chances are it’s thanks to BT.

Many of the television pictures fans across the globe watched on screens of all sizes were carried across BT Media and Broadcast’s (M&Bs) Global Media Network (GMN).

The GMN carried all ITV and BBC coverage to the Freeview digital TV platform in the UK, as well as UK distribution of a BBC closed user broadcast of two games in 4K ultra-high definition.

It is also providing live distribution for Astro TV in Malaysia, enabling transmission to its Direct To Home platform in Kuala Lumpur, and then via satellite across all of south-east Asia. In addition, it is providing distribution of the world feed into the Echostar USA Direct To Home platform, and a multiplex of world feeds to the BT Tower switch for international distribution.

BT’s GMN is purpose-designed and engineered to transport live-to-air quality, real-time video (television) and content of all sizes and formats across the globe. With multiple points of presence in Asia Pacific, Europe and North America – where content is created, distributed or worked on – it was specifically designed and developed by BT to serve the global content and distribution requirements of media producers and television distributors.

Showing domestic violence the red card

BT Sport and the Premier League are supporting a new campaign to help raise awareness of domestic violence.

MPs, celebrities and people working in the footballing community, including singer Jahmene Douglas and television presenter Charlie Webster, launched of Football United Against Domestic Violence at Westminster in May.

Women’s Aid is using the worldwide focus on the World Cup to launch the campaign, to enable the football community to speak out publicly against domestic violence in society, making football a place where perpetrators of domestic abuse are not welcome.

Two women a week are killed by partners or ex-partners, and there’s evidence that reports of domestic violence rise following World Cup games. Football United Against Domestic Violence aims to work with the footballing community in a positive way to help end both abusive behaviour and the sexist attitudes that underpin such abuse, and BT Sport is proud to sponsor the launch of this important campaign.  

Superfast broadband, the Wales story

A little over twelve months since the first cabinets were installed as part of the ambitious Superfast Cymru project, more and more communities across Wales are realising the transformative effects which fibre broadband brings. The rollout of the scheme, which will bring high-speed fibre broadband to 96% of homes and businesses in Wales by 2016, hit the 100,000 milestone in December and now stands at around 156,000.

These new figures are in addition to the 600,000 premises already able to benefit from the service through BT’s commercial footprint. The landmark engineering project, which has already seen 500 kilometres of fibre cable laid, (enough to stretch from Haverfordwest to Folkestone) will make Wales one of the best connected countries in the World, ahead of Japan and the USA.

Cowbridge was amongst the most recent of towns and villages to be linked-in to the high speed information super-highway, following Dinas Powys, where the first cabinet in the Vale of Glamorgan went live in March 2014.

The high-speed service will boost the competitiveness of local firms and offer new ways of flexible working, entertainment and learning opportunities for local residents. Fibre broadband gives users the ability to run multiple bandwidth-hungry applications at the same time such as downloading a film, watching a TV replay service, surfing the internet and playing games online all at the same time. A whole album can be downloaded in less than 30 seconds and a feature length HD film in less than 10 minutes, whilst high-resolution photos can be uploaded to Facebook in seconds.

The new technology is now revolutionising communications across Wales, with homes and businesses in Gwynedd and Anglesey also witnessing the benefits of super-fast fibre. This connectivity is giving local businesses a competitive edge as well as opening new doors for people of every age and background.

Combined investment in fibre broadband infrastructure in Wales, including BDUK, Superfast Cymru and BT’s commercial roll-out, totals £425m, including £90m from European Development Funds, £58m from Welsh Government, £57m from the UK Government, and £220m from BT. The new fibre infrastructure is offered to all service providers on an open, wholesale basis, underpinning a competitive broadband market in Wales, and offering individuals, families and businesses the greatest choice in maximising the benefits of a 21st century, digital Wales.

Barefoot Computing Project and BT help teachers get ready for new computing curriculum using Hokey Cokey

Primary school teachers across England are being invited to learn how to explain the concept of algorithms to their classes using the Hokey Cokey and instructions for making a jam sandwich, thanks to a new series of computing workshops run by the Barefoot Computing Project.

The scheme aims to help primary school teachers implement the new computing curriculum which comes into force in September. It is being led by BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT, in partnership with BT, and is funded by the Department for Education.

Making up a dance routine for something as simple as the Hokey Cokey, figuring out how to streamline a supply chain business process, developing a computer simulation to model how a new antibiotic will impact on the immune system, or just doing long multiplication, are all examples of using algorithms to solve problems. By demystifying concepts like algorithms Barefoot aims to give teachers the confidence that they can successfully teach the new computing curriculum to children from the age of 5.

BT is also adding further support to the classroom by making ScratchJr, a new programming tool specifically aimed at 5-7 year olds, available in UK primary schools for the first time from this autumn.

Primary heads and teachers took part in the first UK demonstration of the application at BT’s headquarters in London during July, at the first conference out of 800 free events taking place across England. These events will equip teachers with the skills and knowledge needed to incorporate the new computing curriculum into their lessons.

Run by volunteer professionals, including those from BT and the ICT and education sectors, these events will introduce the new computing curriculum to teachers and will explain the support available to them through Barefoot and other related projects.


Constituency noticeboard

Switch to saving energy – the online energy saving tool

We want to help customers save energy either at home, at work and while on the move. A free interactive online energy saving tool enables people to work through a series of scenarios to help them highlight various ways they can save energy and potentially money too.

Start using the energy saving tool


10,000 BT Digital Champions rock Wembley Arena

BT and children’s charity The Transformation Trust have been working with schools to sign-up young people to be become BT Digital Champions.

Each student taking part in BT Digital Champions has pledged to spend at least one hour with someone in their local community to share their internet skills. It’s part of BT’s Connected Society programme and aims to build the competence of individuals to get online. As a reward for delivering their pledge, students will go to a concert at Wembley Arena – Rock Assembly, featuring artists such as Professor Green, Conor Maynard and Ella Eyre.

BT signs charter to get millions online

BT is backing a government project to get another 2.5m people online by 2016. It is one of 40 organisations from the public, private and voluntary sectors – including AgeUK, Google, Microsoft, EE and the Society of Chief Librarians – to sign up to a new UK Digital Inclusion Charter.

BT’s digital inclusion programmes  over the past 12 years have shown that by building people’s skills and confidence to go online, we can realise the shared benefits for individuals and organisations.

A BT-supported project has won national recognition for a scheme that saw schoolchildren help older people get online.

The Get IT Together digital inclusion project in the Highland town of Nairn was named the overall winner in this year’s Digital Unite Spring Online Best Event Awards. BT’s partnership in Barnsley, South Yorkshire, was a joint runner-up.

Hundreds of organisations took part in Spring Online, holding free digital taster events across the UK to encourage local people – particularly older people – to take their first steps with digital technology.


Contact us

For policy enquiries please contact:
Tim O'Sullivan, Director of Public Affairs
Tel: 020 7356 6593
Fax: 020 7726 0613

For enquiries about constituency issues please contact:
Clova Fyfe, Head of Parliamentary Affairs
Tel: 020 7356 5352
Fax: 020 7726 0613

If you have an enquiry about your own home or business lines including new orders, please call the Parliamentary Helpline on 0800 200 789
(Monday - Friday 8.00am - 6.00pm)

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