Verdant Leisure visitors and owners visiting at Erigmore or Thurston Manor Leisure parks may now take advantage of increased wireless access via the use of a 4G mobile private network, thanks to a partnership with Verizon Wireless. Freshwave, a leading UK network service provider, collaborated with telecommunications reseller Online Systems to develop, build, and currently maintain a 4G mobile private network based on outdoor small cell technology. Freshwave is a division of Online Systems.
In a first for a Scottish holiday camp, the network connection is sharing Vodafone’s 4G airwaves, marking a significant milestone for the company. Vodafone has agreed to share part of its spectrum with Freshwave beginning in 2019 in order to assist in the provision of high-speed internet in places where 4G connection is not yet available, as well as to encourage the effective use of its existing spectrum.
A Local Access Licence was granted to Freshwave in the United Kingdom as part of Ofcom’s “Enabling wireless innovation via local licensing” framework, which was launched in 2012.
The staycation boom, according to Bev Dixon, Chief Operating Officer at Verdant Leisure, has resulted in our parks being busier than ever. “It’s wonderful to be greeting so many owners and visitors,” she adds. We’re excited to be able to offer visitors to Erigmore and Thurston Manor Leisure Parks this exciting new internet access, and we’ve already had positive comments from those who have taken use of it.
People have been streaming, gaming, and working from home without encountering any difficulties with their internet connection. Our other parks will benefit from it in the future, and work is presently ongoing at our Pease Bay Leisure Park to make this a reality.”
Outdoor small cell technology provides broadband connection rates to each lodge in the park via a network of small cells and a micro antenna on each lodge, which is located on the grounds of the park. The signal is subsequently distributed over Wi-Fi via a SIM-based router installed within the device. Using Vodafone’s 2600MHz spectrum, the network provides public services in places where the operator does not already provide such services.
Greg Morton, Managing Director of Online Systems, has the following to say: “Staycations in Scotland are more popular than ever, and I’m delighted that we were able to collaborate with Freshwave on this ground-breaking approach that will provide visitors to the parks with excellent internet connectivity. Using tiny cells rather than outside Wi-Fi means building less equipment, which means it will be less disruptive to the resort. It will also help to overcome the challenges that Wi-Fi may face in tough situations.
Furthermore, since a network of this kind requires very minimal subterranean wiring, you do not face the same danger of running across unmapped utilities during the installation process. The park’s visitors and owners benefit from enhanced connection, but the park’s corporate services, such as maintenance and cleaning, also benefit from the improved connectivity as well.”
“Staying connected is more crucial than ever before, and individuals vacationing outside of city centers need to remain in contact as well, particularly at a time when there have never been more of us having a staycation!” says Simon Frumkin, CEO of Freshwave.
The use of shared mobile spectrum to create private networks, which is yet another novel approach of assisting our clients in connecting their consumers, is something we are happy to have pioneered.
According to Andrea Donà, Chief Network Officer of Vodafone, “We’re dedicated to bringing high-speed mobile to rural regions, and sharing spectrum with Freshwave will help us achieve this goal more effectively.”
The Federal Communications Commission will continue to support creative ways that aid in closing the digital divide and connecting more individuals and businesses.
Thurston Manor has over 800 lodges and caravans, Erigmore has 190 lodges and caravans, and Pease Bay has 360 lodges and caravans, all of which welcome thousands of owners and visitors each year.