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North Yorkshire UK Completes Rollout of Free WiFi to 20 Towns

Monday, March 28th, 2022 (4:45 pm) - Score 2,304
wifi wireless signal

The North Yorkshire County Council (NYCC), in partnership with NYnet, has today announced the completion of their £3.6 million project to deploy a “free public” Wi-Fi (wireless) internet access network across a total of 20 market towns in the county (up from the originally planned list of 16).

Like most such networks, the service has only been deployed across busy town centres, rather than the entire town. Just some of the market towns to have benefitted from this deployment include Harrogate, Knaresborough, Settle, Boroughbridge, Pickering, Sherburn, Selby, Stokesley, Scarborough, Skipton, Northallerton, Malton, Richmond, Whitby, Leyburn, Ripon and more.

NOTE: Much of the investment for this has come from the York & North Yorkshire Local Enterprise Partnership via the UK Government’s £900m Getting Building Fund. Harrogate Borough Council also contributed £300k to provide extra coverage across the district.

The plan itself was first announced last year as part of a wider scheme (here). The NYCC sees the deployment as being a useful tool for helping to promote local shops and services, while also being something that could support local residents, particularly those who may lack good broadband connectivity.

David Dickson, Chair of the York & North Yorkshire LEP Infrastructure & Joint Assets Board, said:

“This whole programme of work to improve digital infrastructure in North Yorkshire is really important for the region. It will support York and North Yorkshire in becoming a greener, fairer and stronger economy.”

Admittedly, the project has also attracted the occasional bit of criticism, with some people feeling as if the money could have been better spent improving mobile broadband in rural areas with poorer connectivity. But it’s worth remembering that the extra funding came with constraints, which meant it couldn’t just be spent like however the council might have liked, or so we’re told.

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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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