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CLA Slams Virgin Media Broadband Speed Boost as Unfair to UK Rural Areas

Posted: 07th Feb, 2012 By: MarkJ
ukcountry land and business association ukThe Country Land and Business Association (CLA), a lobby group for owners of land and property across England and Wales, has accused Virgin Media of being "unfair to rural homes and businesses" after it recently announced plans to double their superfast broadband speeds (here) for 13 million UK homes.

Dr Charles Trotman, CLA Head of Rural Development, said:

"Rural areas are still losing out in the broadband provider war. Virgin Media’s latest rollout ignores homes and businesses in the countryside to give areas that already have good broadband even faster connections.

Rural areas with inadequate broadband should be brought up to speed first before doubling the speeds for areas that do not need improving. We are seeking urgent talks with Virgin Media to establish how best they can help rural communities."

In fairness Virgin Media has always been a closed commercial firm and one that covers approximately half of the country, it's also not a part of the government's Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) process (although they do have a stake in Fujitsu's shaky plan for an open rural FTTH network).

On the other hand it would be good to see a greater level of engagement by Virgin Media, which many view as being an operator that has the economic power and physical ability to push well beyond their existing network footprint. Some attempts have been made alongside Fujitsu but lately progress has been going in the wrong direction (example).
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