More than 50,000 homes and businesses have improved internet access following the latest stage of a project rolling out better broadband services in Lincolnshire.
Alford and Chapel St Leonards are amongst the latest places to benefit from the roll out of the high speed network across the county.
The Onlincolnshire project is a multi-million pound partnership between Lincolnshire councils and BT, with additional funding from the Government and European Regional Development Fund,
Executive member for IT Coun Richard Davies said: “I’m delighted we’ve been able to hit this milestone moment – right on schedule.
“We’re now bringing faster broadband to over 1,000 Lincolnshire properties a week, which is a fantastic achievement.
“To get better speeds, people in these upgraded areas should now contact their broadband provider to check for availability and upgrade their contract.
“Better broadband brings a wealth of opportunities to both businesses and residents alike, and we’re determined that Lincolnshire won’t miss out.”
The news was also welcomed by digital economy minister Ed Vaizey, during a visit to the county.
He said: “I’m incredibly pleased to hear that our rollout of superfast broadband in Lincolnshire is proceeding at pace and more than 50,000 homes and businesses are able to access a much faster and reliable service as a result. We are witnessing a transformation of the digital landscape of Lincolnshire, and the work being done will deliver a substantial boost to the local economy.”
Building upon the existing commercial roll-out by the private sector in the county, the ambitious project remains on target to provide at least 89 per cent of all properties with access to superfast fibre broadband by April 2016. Additionally, for the first time ever, standard broadband of at least 2Mbps should be available everywhere in Lincolnshire.
The county council is also planning a second phase of improvements that aims to extend superfast coverage to 95 per cent by the end of 2017.
Bill Murphy, managing director of next generation access for BT, said: “This is a landmark achievement for the Onlincolnshire programme, particularly with all the challenges that rolling out a fibre network in such a rural county like Lincolnshire brings.”
“Fibre broadband will bring the digital world right to the doorsteps of homes and businesses across the county. We know that small businesses form a key part of the local economy in rural areas. Faster broadband breaks down the barriers to doing business in the digital world with applications like online trading, which helps to empower those small businesses to find new markets, sell new products, try new models and compete on an equal footing with larger businesses.”
The high-speed network is available on an open access, wholesale basis to all communication providers, therefore offering Lincolnshire households and businesses the benefit of real choice from a highly competitive market.
For further details on the Onlincolnshire project and to find out initial information on what’s planned for each area, please visit www.onlincolnshire.org . Details may be subject to change.