Torbay Development Agency calls for broadband support

Monday, February 27th 2012
Residents and businesses in Torbay are being urged to complete a broadband questionnaire.
Torbay Development Agency calls for broadband support
Torbay Development Agency has issued a final push for residents and businesses to support the Connecting Devon and Somerset (CDS) super-fast broadband project by completing a survey.

Launched on February 6th 2012 and due to run until the end of the month, the questionnaire is designed to generate a picture of local broadband customers' online activity.

Participants are encouraged to give their opinion on the quality of existing broadband services and are asked how much they would be willing to pay for an enhanced connection, as well as how faster speeds would be of benefit to them.

This data will be used to help telecoms firms work with communities to deliver vital broadband infrastructure improvements, with the support of public money.

CDS is aiming to get at least 10,000 responses to the survey in order to support its next-generation access plans, which will see super-fast broadband extended to at least 85 per cent of properties by 2015 and 100 per cent by 2020.

As of last Tuesday (February 21st), a total of 8,800 questionnaires had been completed.

At present, almost one-fifth of properties across Devon and Somerset have speeds of less than 2Mbps, while super-fast broadband is available to just four per cent of Somerset and 17 per cent of Devon.

The CDS scheme is looking to improve the quality of connectivity courtesy of £31 million of government funding, plus additional money from local councils.

Mayor of Torbay Graham Oliver said: "We must work together to ensure Torbay benefits from better broadband speeds, which would help attract more business to the area with faster access to services and a stronger digital infrastructure."

Alan Denby, director of economic strategy at the development agency, added: "It is important that Torbay's businesses and residents support this important initiative that will help give us a competitive edge over the rest of the UK."

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