Home Page Haverhill News

Haverhill Poll
Haverhill Poll


Mailing List

Matthew Hancock
Your Local MP

All systems go for faster broadband across Suffolk

Monday, 24th December 2012.

AMBITIOUS plans intended to give every household and business premise in Suffolk access to broadband speeds of at least two megabits per second (Mbps) by the end of 2015, and over 80 per cent access to superfast coverage, took a significant step forward on Friday.

Suffolk County Council and BT signed a contract under the Government’s Broadband Delivery UK programme, for the organisations to work together to revolutionise broadband through the provision of a fibre network by BT.

The project will use public and private funds to deliver a fibre network to parts of the county not covered by commercial plans.

The contract signing happened at the county council’s Endeavour House headquarters in Ipswich and was attended by six of Suffolk’s MPs.

Openreach, BT’s local network division, will now begin the work on the ground surveying locations around the county. Once these surveys are completed, details of the next stage of the project will be revealed.

It means that within three years, around nine out of ten Suffolk properties are expected to be able to connect to fibre-based broadband which should improve the speed they can access.

Homes and businesses that are harder to reach with a fixed fibre line will be connected using alternative broadband technologies.

Cllr Mark Bee, Suffolk County Council’s leader and chair of the Better Broadband for Suffolk programme board, said: “When we launched the Better Broadband for Suffolk campaign, we wanted to ensure that everyone who lives and works in our county benefits. Today I’m proud to say that, with BT, we aim to deliver exactly that.

“Improving access to broadband is going to help Suffolk’s economy grow by as much as 20 per cent and create up to 5,000 new jobs.

"There’s a digital divide between Suffolk and the rest of the country but an even more acute disparity between urban and rural Suffolk.

"The Better Broadband programme is going to close those gaps, boost school attainment and help the public sector to deliver services more efficiently

“I’m delighted that we’ve come such a long way in such a short space of time. In the new year, the first properties are going to start benefiting from the programme and within three years, broadband access across Suffolk is going to be unrecognisable from what it is today.”

During supplier negotiations, officials placed emphasis on the importance of extending access to reliable and upgraded broadband connections to all premises in Suffolk, not just faster speeds where it is easiest to deliver. Only two per cent of the hardest-to-reach premises are expected to have speeds less than 5Mbps.

Bill Murphy, managing director, NGA, BT Group, said: “This is great news for Suffolk. The county is ambitious for economic growth and higher-speed broadband services are crucial for delivering that by helping to retain and grow small businesses, providing access to a global online market for entertainment and business opportunities and creating jobs.

“Fibre broadband will bring Suffolk’s predominantly rural economy into the digital fast lane – revitalising small towns, villages and hamlets by making it possible to start and run a connected business from these locations and in the long-term, ensuring local people don’t suffer from a digital divide.”

BT’s network is open to all internet service providers on an equal, wholesale basis, ensuring Suffolk’s homes and businesses will benefit from a highly competitive market, in turn bringing greater choice and affordable prices.

Fibre to the cabinet technology, which delivers broadband speeds up to 80Mbps will be the main technology deployed and fibre to the premises technology – delivering speeds of up to 330Mbps – is also planned to be deployed in certain areas and will be available on demand throughout the whole of the fibre footprint should local businesses want the ultra-fast speed it offers.

Haverhill Online News

Comment on this story

[board listing] [login] [register]

No comments have been posted for this news entry.


You must be logged in to post messages. (login now)

© Haverhill-UK | Accessibility | Disclaimer