Rotherhithe’s ‘not-spot’ status – is improvement on the way?

21 March 2017

Rotherhithe is infamous for its slow internet speeds. Around 7,400 homes in the area cannot get broadband faster than 10Mbps and 4,000 hover around 2Mbps.[2]

The lack of broadband infrastructure is partly because BT/Openreach has operated for a long time without much competition. The connectivity problems also relate to the local history and geography of Rotherhithe, as copper wire still traces the old route it used to take around the docks, rather than following the street layout.

In September 2015, BT confirmed that they intended to expand the coverage of their fibre broadband connectivity to 18,000 extra premises in Southwark. To date, 21 new broadband street cabinets have been delivered, providing 6,880 properties with connectivity to superfast broadband. Nine of those cabinets are on the Rotherhithe peninsula, representing 2,922 possible new connections.

The London Assembly Regeneration Committee is investigating digital connectivity across London and will meet with Southwark Council and local residents and businesses to discuss the situation. Topics for discussion will include:

  • The reason behind connectivity issues in Rotherhithe and the impact on local residents and businesses.
  • Southwark Council’s work to improve the connectivity issues in the area and a progress update on its partnership with BT to deliver broadband to 18,000 premises.
  • What the Mayor of London could do to enhance connectivity in Rotherhithe.


Spokespeople available:
Navin Shah AM
, Chair of the Regeneration Committee
Cllr Fiona Colley, Cabinet Member for Finance, Modernisation and Performance, Southwark Council
Local residents

Location: Canada Water Library
Date and time: Wednesday 22 March, 2:30pm-4:00pm
Directions: Nearest station: Canada Water (Jubilee)

Follow us @LondonAssembly and take part in the discussion using #AssemblyRegeneration or #ConnectLondon

Notes to editors

  1. Location map of Canada Water Library.
  2. Based on Thinkbroadband estimates, see K Stoddart, Living in a broadband ‘not-spot’? Try using the church spire to get a signal, The Guardian, 12 November 2016.
  3. As well as investigating issues that matter to Londoners, the London Assembly acts as a check and a balance on the Mayor.


For media enquiries, please contact Lisa Lam on 020 7983 4067.  For out of hours media enquiries, call 020 7983 4000 and ask for the London Assembly duty press officerNon-media enquiries should be directed to the Public Liaison Unit on 020 7983 4100.

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