|3-C BEAM WIRELESS|
BROADBAND TO MYTHOLMROYD
Friday, January 16, 2004
In an amazing feat of ingenuity, local community co-operative 3-C have succeeded in bringing broadband to Mytholmroyd nearly a month before BT are prepared to do it. 3-C have managed to transmit broadband wirelessly from Heptonstall Church to St. Michael's Church in Mytholmroyd. Anyone with a wireless enabled laptop in the Mytholmroyd area may be able to pick up broadband from the aerial at the top of St. Michael's Church.
This was only possible because of the support of the local clergy, Howard Pask of Heptonstall Church James Allison of St. Michaels. The vicarage in Heptonstall was enabled for broadband with a 2 mb connection which communicated with Heptonstall Church tower. The 3-C team constructed scaffolding on the roof of the tower and attached an aerial which then beams the broadband nearly two and half miles (as the crow flies) to Mytholmroyd.
On top of the tower, Heptonstall Church
The 3-C team then climbed on to the roof of the tower at St. Michael's Church and attached another device to receive the broadband and transmit it to the surrounding area in Mytholmroyd.
Consequently, Mytholmroyd has a broadband capability nearly a month before BT can provide it. Anyone with a wireless enabled computer or laptop should be able to connect to broadband - for free just at the moment.
On top of the tower, St Michael's, Mytholmroyd
The Calder Valley was in danger of being left behind as the rest of the country was switched on to broadband Internet. The Hebden Bridge Web and Mytholmroyd Net have campaigned for two years for broadband. BT have been slow to react and put obstacles in the way. For example, Mytholmroyd was told it needed 500 people to sign up for the service. Even when this happened, it has been made to wait several months.
Despite the wind and winter showers, the 3-C team installed the small antennas on both church towers and connected up waterproofed, battery-powered wireless points. This link was then relayed back to a 2Mbit/s ADSL line at the vicarage. Testing the coverage in Mytholmroyd, we were able to obtain a full-speed broadband service using a laptop about three hundred metres away from the church.
One of the reasons 3-C wants to bring broadband to Mytholmroyd early is to enable 3-C to hold demonstration sessions in the church, so that local people will be able to understand and experience wireless broadband for when the exchange is eventually enabled.
Further information about 3-C or community broadband may be obtained from the 3-C website at www.3-c.coop or by phoning 0845 456 1793.
use our discussion forum where there are several contributions on this topic.