South Gloucestershire Council could begin broadband work this year

Friday, January 27th 2012
Work to improve super-fast broadband connectivity across South Gloucestershire could begin in December.
South Gloucestershire Council could begin broadband work this year
Publicly-funded super-fast broadband work in South Gloucestershire could get underway as early as December, the local council has revealed.

Last month, the local authority linked up with Wiltshire Council to make their broadband projects more attractive to private sector telecoms firms, therefore encouraging competition in the tender process and driving down costs.

Nearly £3 million of public investment in the project has been announced by South Gloucestershire Council (SGC), with this cash pot comprising up to £2.2 million of its own budget and £710,000 from government body Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK).

This money will be spent on delivering minimum speeds of 2Mbps to every property across the county, with 90 per cent of homes and businesses set to receive super-fast speeds.

For the project to move any further forward, it must be approved by the council's cabinet in February and submitted to BDUK by the end of that month.

John Goddard, Conservative cabinet member for corporate resources at SGC, said news that its plans are moving forward is "evidence of our commitment to tackle the digital divide" between urban and rural communities.

"This combined council and BDUK funding will make a huge difference towards ensuring that they are not left behind," he commented.

Discussing the importance of improved internet connectivity across South Gloucestershire, Mr Goddard stated: "High-speed broadband brings a wealth of economic and social benefits for communities and businesses alike."

The councillor went on to state the partnership between South Gloucestershire and Wiltshire councils, along with the local authority in Swindon, means "these benefits will be available even sooner than first hoped".

A survey is currently being run by SGC in a bid to discover levels of demand for super-fast broadband access in the county and identify the areas where improved connectivity is needed most. So far, more than 3,000 people have completed the poll.

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30th November 2012
Swindon are no longer part of thepartnership Wiltshire&South Glos.Swindon following own path to broadband nirvana.Andrew Ferguson Monday12Nov 2012
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