GOVERNMENT BROADBAND ALLOCATION GOOD NEWS FOR RURAL WORCESTERSHIRE
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GOVERNMENT BROADBAND ALLOCATION GOOD NEWS FOR RURAL WORCESTERSHIRE

The government’s announcement of £3.35 million funding for broadband in Worcestershire has been welcomed by Peter Luff, MP for Mid Worcestershire. However, the MP said he had hoped a larger share of the available funding would come to the county.

Nationally, the investment should ensure that the UK has the best broadband network in Europe by 2015. Ninety per cent of homes and businesses will have access to superfast broadband and everyone in the UK will have services operating at at least 2Mbps. A further £300 million will be available by 2017 as part of the TV licence fee settlement. Locally the county council will lead the broadband roll-out and match the Government’s investment with European, their own or private funds.

Peter said,

“Our share of the funding, while lower than I had hoped, is still good news for our villages that have struggled for so long with painfully slow internet connections or no coverage at all. Parish and town councils worked hard with the county council and BT to put together an effective bid for the £530 million government investment in broadband and we have won a significant amount of money.

“However, the allocation is not as much as we had expected. In my estimate we needed about half as much again to achieve the full transformation of local broadband services. That means the priority now is to ensure that the funding in Worcestershire is distributed fairly with preference given to the most rural areas and hard-to-reach communities, where the market is likely to take long time to deliver then necessary speed without help.

“Meanwhile, I will express both my gratitude and disappointment to the government and ask what more can be done to ensure Worcestershire, a county that so often gets overlooked when it comes to funding issues, really does get the quality of broadband services it needs.”

ENDS


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