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Faster Broadband for 113 GPs and 680 Homes in Essex and Hertfordshire

Wednesday, June 5th, 2019 (3:26 pm) - Score 1,250
fibre optic cables laid flat

The UK Government has handed £2.1m to support a bid by the West Essex and East Hertfordshire Digital Innovation Zone and Superfast Essex projects, which will extend superfast broadband to 113 doctors surgeries and 680 homes across the Broxbourne, East Hertfordshire, Epping Forest, Harlow and Uttlesford areas.

At the time of writing the only details that we’ve been able to find about this bid anywhere stem from an article in the local Saffron Walden Reporter and a Facebook comment by a local MP (below). This is odd since it’s usually possible to find at least some hint in recent council announcements, or on related project websites, but not this time.

Nevertheless we assume that all of this is intended to support the Government’s commitment to ensure that all UK NHS doctors, hospitals and community care facilities are connected to a Gigabit capable “full fibre” (FTTP etc.) network (here). As such any funding is likely to have come from one of their full fibre programmes (LFFN, RGC etc.).

Kemi Badenoch, MP for Saffron Walden, said:

“For the past few months, I have been lobbying the government on behalf a bid that will bring ultrafast broadband speeds to 15 GP surgeries across Uttlesford.

I am pleased to say that this has been successful and £2.1 million has been awarded to this project.

The money will mean that GP sites in places like Elsenham, Great Chesterford and Thaxted will be at the forefront of digital innovation within the NHS.

Local residents will have access to new digital services such as online consultations. This will ensure that communities across the constituency will continue to receive the very best healthcare available.

Congratulations to Cllr Alan Lion at the Digital Innovation Zone and Connie Kerbst at Superfast Essex for their work on this.

Rolling-out better broadband in rural areas has been one of my top priorities being elected in 2017. This news builds on the great work done by the previous Conservative administration at Uttlesford who recognised the importance by contributing half a million pounds to phase three of the Superfast Essex roll-out.

The project will connect a total 113 GP practices, an estimated 680 homes and help around 8,000 more people get superfast broadband across the Broxbourne, East Hertfordshire, Epping Forest, Harlow and Uttlesford districts.”

The deployment should also help to complement the Superfast Essex (SFE) scheme, which is currently working with Openreach (BT) and Gigaclear to extend “superfast broadband” coverage to around 97% of the county by December 2019 and will then get as close to 100% as possible by 2021 (the next Phase 4B contract is expected to be announced very soon).

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Mark Jackson
By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
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1 Response
  1. Avatar TomD

    Great! The Reporter article is a little wobbly though:
    “The project will connect a total 113 GP practices, an estimated 680 homes and help around 8,000 more people get superfast broadband across the Broxbourne, East Hertfordshire, Epping Forest, Harlow and Uttlesford”
    I know we need affordable homes, but that level of occupancy – 12 per property – seems excessive?

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