Collapsing Manchester

 

By Simon Woodhead

In 2009, we opened a PoP in Manchester to provide essential and unique diversity from London. It is crazy to think that was 11 years ago!! In that time it has become 3 sites and a metro-area dark-fibre ring which has itself under-pinned some pretty venerable names.

In the years to 2020, lots changed. The reason we were in 3 data-centres and needed to use then buy another operators metro-ring was the acquisition of UKGrid by Telecity. The subsequent acquisition of Telecity by Equinix has changed things further, some good, some not.

In looking at our footprint, Manchester now sticks out as a disproportionate cost relative to its utilisation and as such it has lagged behind other sites in hardware refreshes, and we don’t like that. We have therefore decided to close it, or more accurately withdraw all compute and collapse the network back to a single PoP.

We have long-term connectivity contracts (both buy and sell) so it will remain as a PoP, albeit one that is unnecessary in 2020 given the extent of our network elsewhere. It will cease to be an Availability Zone for our voice stack however as it will not have any compute. DNS has already been changed for those following our interop guidance; those not will need to remove address configs before August 31st. The IP addresses will be repurposed so our interop won’t ‘change’ as such, they’ll just relate a new PoP outside the UK.

Thank you Manchester!