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Changes to Rural Broadband



 Changes to Rural Broadband

Could You Benefit from Changes to Rural Broadband in Your Area?

The BDUK Scheme gets a £10m Boost to Reach the Most Rural Areas of the UK Resulting in Changes to Rural Broadband in Many Remote Locations by 2017

A £10m boost has been added to BDUK - Broadband Delivery UK’s pot of £1.2billion in a bid to connect the 5% of the population that is considered the most rural in the UK.  The fund is to be invested in alternative broadband technologies that could provide innovative ways to bring superfast broadband to the whole of the UK by 2017.  Solutions such as 4G mobile signals to deliver wireless broadband and satellite technology could be considered.

Maria Miller, Culture Secretary has suggested that technology companies should think of the best ways to connect rural Britain.  She is quoted as saying

“Our nationwide rollout of superfast broadband will benefit everyone from school children to business owners, parents to patients. An estimated 10,000 homes and businesses are gaining access to superfast speeds every week but now we need to focus on the hardest to reach communities. If we want to ensure that that all communities can benefit then we need to think imaginatively about alternative technology, and the pilots enabled by the £10m fund will be instrumental in helping us overcome the challenges of reaching the final 5 per cent of premises.”

This additional fund will be open on 17th March and headed by former Commercial Director of the London Organising Committee for the 2012 Olympics, Chris Townsend.  

Slow internet speeds in the countryside can significantly limit online activity thanks to old copper connections and long distances from the nearest telephone exchange.  Patchy and irregular coverage can have detrimental ramifications on rural businesses, home businesses and personal use in rural areas.   “Super Switch On Day” in December 2013 did see an additional 5000 homes switched on taking the Government’s target of reaching 95% of homes and businesses by 2017 a step closer to fruition.  

David Quance of Mole Valley Plus, the Member Benefits’ side of the business has worked on developing a rural broadband offering based on satellite broadband which is available now for customers of Mole Valley Farmers with additional benefits for Mole Valley Farmers members:

“As an ex dairy farmer in a rural part of North Devon I know and understand the frustrations of limited or zero broadband supply. After hosting an evening at one of our stores to give our members the opportunity to discuss their frustrations about rural broadband with a supplier it became evident that many of our members face the same issues.  It was after this meeting that we decided to discuss our partnership with Europasat. Months on now it has proven to be the right move with many of our members taking up the offering we now provide.  We certainly welcome any new funds or developments from the Government concerning rural broadband connection that could boost business within rural areas. “

You can read the Government’s policy on rural broadband here.

 
 
Written by Kelly Quance

 



Source Details

 The Independent, Gov.uk, The financial Times, The Telegraph



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