Superfast residential and business broadband has now reached the remote village of Kielder in Northumberland.
The provision of the faster services has been made possible by the installation of new fibre-optic cables. This comes at a time when the government has announced that the national roll-out of the faster internet services has reached around three million premises in the country.
Ed Vaizey, the minister for digital economy, has welcomed the news that the residents and businesses in Kielder now have access to superfast broadband as part of the iNorthumberland programme, which is a joint project between BT and Northumberland County Council. To reach Kielder the Openreach engineers had to overcome many challenges, including removing old, unused cable; finding buried joint boxes; and dealing with underground duct blockages.
The leader of Northumberland County Council, Grant Davey, has also welcomed the news. He said that it is only fair that everyone has access to the same quality services regardless of how remote their location. This latest phase of the project has provided 120 premises with access to residential and business broadband and many have already signed up for faster services.
How the new services are changing things is clear at the local pub, where customers can now access faster Wi-Fi – an essential feature when there is a very poor mobile signal in the village. The previous service was slow and sluggish if more than a few people wanted to use it.
The north-east regional partnership director for BT, Simon Roberson, said that these new services will also provide a useful boost for tourism in the area.