Monday, 23 May 2016 07:04

Dorset 'on track' with broadband plan

Written by  Ruralcity Media
Dorset 'on track' with broadband plan

Dorset says it is on track with plans to deliver faster broadband for its residents and businesses.

The Superfast Dorset project is on track to lay 1,000,000 metres of fibre optic "spine" in the county ... enough to stretch from Land's End to John o' Groats.

The project is also about to build its 500th cabinet – the green roadside structures which allow nearby premises to connect to faster broadband.

Nine out of ten Dorset homes and businesses can now access superfast broadband – download speeds of 24Mbs or more.

The latest communities to get new or improved access to fibre broadband thanks to the Superfast Dorset programme include a number of rural communbities.

Connections have been laid to Langton Herring, Boscombe, Christchurch, Milborne St Andrew, Poole, Parkstone, Westbourne, Morcombelake, South Perrott, Chedington and Stalbridge.

The project is delivering fibre broadband in areas which fall outside the private sector's commercial roll-out of the high-speed technology. It is funded by the government, Dorset's councils and telecoms giant BT.

Colin Jamieson, Dorset County Council cabinet member for economy and growth, said: "People only get the faster, more reliable service if they contact their provider and ask to switch to fibre.

"Investing public money in fibre broadband helps sustain our rural communities and maintains Dorset's competitive edge as a business destination.

"It also allows homeowners to do things that need a faster internet connection like providing access to skills and learning and other social connections."

BT South West Regional Manager Paul Coles said superfast broadband brought benefits to businesses as well as homes.

"We have already reached more than 350,000 homes and businesses with our fibre network in Dorset – and we are going further," he said.

"Businesses can use it to sharpen their competitive edge, whilst households are able to benefit from better learning, entertainment and other online activities."

Local resident James Nalty, who lives at rural Stour Provost, near Gillingham, said fibre broadband had seen his internet download speed rise from 1.9Mbps to 23Mbps despite living a mile outside the village.

Mr Nalty said: "I was frustrated with the old service and upgraded as soon as it was available. Fibre broadband has actually worked out cheaper than my standard service."

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