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Isle of Wight Approves GBP15 Million Rural Superfast Broadband Investment

Posted: 15th Dec, 2011 By: MarkJ
isle of wight council ukThe Isle of Wight Council (IWC) has officially approved a new plan that will see it investing £3 million to help superfast broadband ISP services reach the islands many rural areas. The money will then be matched by funding from the Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) office and the private sector (total spend of £15m).

According to Ventnorblog, BT has also committed to deploying superfast broadband services but only in "commercially viable areas" (e.g. Newport, Cowes and Ryde). Indeed this week's new batch of FTTC exchange upgrades have Newport down for an upgrade in 2012 (here).

IWC Councillor, Mr George Brown, said:

"BT’s massive investment is very good news but would not provide the total solution as it would not bring super-fast broadband to some of the Island’s significant towns nor its rural areas.

What we are proposing will mean that rather than having a two-speed Island, we will have super-fast broadband available to everyone wherever they live or work."

At present Ofcom reports that people on the Isle of Wight (population of over 140,000) receive an average "modem sync" speed of 7.3Mbps, with 12.4% getting less than 2Mbps. Broadband take-up sits at 64% and there is ZERO superfast broadband availability. Work to reach rural areas with the new service could begin during the first half of 2013. Credits to Thinkbroadband for spotting this.
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