South of Scotland broadband plan remains on target

Monday, August 22nd 2011
The South of Scotland Alliance has pledged to stay on course with its superfast broadband plans, despite the nation being allocated less Broadband Delivery UK funding than expected.
South of Scotland broadband plan remains on target
Plans to bring superfast broadband to the south of Scotland remain on track, despite recent news that funding for the scheme may be less readily available than was initially thought.

Duncan Nisbet, project director at the South of Scotland Alliance (Sosa), told the Dumfries and Galloway Standard that his organisation shares the disappointment of the Scottish government that only £68 million of the £530 million Broadband Delivery UK fund is to be allocated to Scotland.

Encompassing the Scottish Borders and Dumfries and Galloway councils, plus Scottish Enterprise and local NHS boards, Sosa told the publication earlier this month that it wishes to bring speeds of 30Mbps to as many premises as possible.

However, this strategy was based on the assumption that the south of Scotland would receive around £36 million in funding on its own, with the rest of the planned £120 million budget to be made up by Scottish government and European funding, as well as local authority contributions and private cash.

Despite this, Mr Nisbet said Sosa will be progressing with its plans in exactly the same manner as before and will submit a funding bid next month.

"The Scottish government still has a deadline set of 2020 for the entire population of Scotland to have next-generation broadband, so that is what we want to deliver," he explained.

Sosa aims to get started on its ambitious broadband plans within the next 12 to 14 months, with a projected completion date of 2013.

At present, the Dumfries and Galloway area has only limited access to broadband services, as recent Ofcom data has shown that its average speed presently stands at 6.1Mbps.

Around 15 per cent of residents are having to cope with speeds of less than 2Mbps, the level which Sosa wishes to set as the new minimum standard under its plans.

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Comments (1)

08th October 2009
After the BIG retune we have lost 30 channels ... why? What happent to if its not broke dont fix it ... ohhhh look they tryed fixing it and made it worse!
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