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BT Finalise £460k State Aid Supported Fibre Broadband Rollout in Rothbury

Wednesday, March 27th, 2013 (8:21 am) - Score 999

The rural Northumberland (England, UK) town of Rothbury, which is home to around 2,000 people, looks set to benefit from a new super-fast broadband ISP network after the county council, BT and GreySky Consulting signed a new deal that will use £460,000 of funding from DEFRA’s £20m Rural Community Broadband Fund.

The public funding, which will apparently be met by a “substantial investment” from BT and through “direct community involvement“, will see a new FTTC/P based network being rolled out to reach 98% of local homes and businesses by the end of 2014. The overall project cost is worth almost £1m and should benefit around 1,500 local homes.

Kate Roe, Northumberland County Council’s Deputy CEO, said:

This is an important milestone in the campaign to bring super-fast broadband to every home, business and school in Northumberland by 2020. It is very exciting that Rothbury has been chosen as the first place to benefit from the fund and we are sure that as programme rolls-out in Rothbury this can only help other projects in the county, which are set to follow.

Since November 2011, when the council launched its iNorthumberland campaign, more than 15,500 people have got behind the campaign by registering their demand for better broadband across the county.”

Northumberland County Council are also continuing to develop further RCBF bids so that other areas of the county, such as Hexhamshire, Felton, North Tyne and Redesdale, Riding Mill and Coquetdale, can benefit from faster broadband services too. The news follows a recent local campaign for more funding (here).

ISPreview.co.uk also understands that Rothbury could be one of the first places to benefit from a new wayleave agreement, which was reached between the CLA and NFU at the start of this year (here).

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