We wouldn't normally expect to monitor consultations from the Department of Culture Media and Sport for our property clients, but they are currently consulting on implementation measures for the EU Broadband Cost Reduction Directive. This has to become UK law by 1 July 2016. 

DCLG are already consulting on a new Part R to the Building Regulations, which contacts and clients may already be aware of. Essentially, new buildings will have to accommodate fast broadband. 

DCMS are consulting on measures including: 

* need for information sharing between utilities providers; 

* need to allow broadband providers access to blocks of flats ("buildings containing multiple dwellings") up to an "Access Point";

*requirements on network providers to share their infrastructure.

The Directive (and the consultation) both say that the need to grant broadband providers access to buildings does not override the need to obtain consent or wayleaves from landowners. What we need to watch when the consultation ends is how exactly this plays out, and what obligations property owners will end up being under. The Electronic Communications Code caused a lot of problems for land owners, and they will want to make sure that their tenants are connected without legal problems arising from having to accommodate multiple service providers in confined common areas and risers.