More of North Yorkshire’s rural residents are about to benefit from high speed internet access in their homes.
Village communities around Darley, Blubberhouses and Appletreewick are in line for broadband project grants worth nearly £50,000 to enable individuals and businesses to access new or upgraded high speed broadband transmitted wirelessly.
The service will be provided by LN Communications Ltd and will be funded through grants from ‘Connecting North Yorkshire’ and the Rural Development Programme for England. Connecting North Yorkshire is an initiative led by North Yorkshire County Council, which has worked closely with Harrogate Borough Council and Craven District Council on this scheme.
County Councillor Carl Les, Chair of Connecting North Yorkshire said:
Connecting homes and businesses at high speeds to the internet is vital for the future of the economy of rural communities” said
The village communities which will benefit from the new grant funding package are Appletreewick, Barden, Blubberhouses, Burnsall, Darley, Fewston, Hartington, Hazlewood, Hebden, Padside, Storiths, Timble,Thruscross and Thornthwaite.
Ruth Smith, a board member of the York, North Yorkshire and East Riding Local Enterprise Partnership, said:
News of the funding package is very welcome.
Campaigners in Darley, led by David Holland and Sue Welch, have worked hard over the past nine months, raising awareness and surveying households to prove that there is both a need and a demand for faster broadband in the community. I live in the village, and am delighted that their efforts – and those of the broadband campaigners in the other village communities – have helped to secure the funding for the scheme.
As well as being great news for local residents, a high speed connection helps attract investment to the area and can help businesses become more efficient, access new markets and enable people to work from home. It will help ensure that our rural communities remain vibrant places to live and work in the future.
Julian Smith, Member of Parliament for Skipton and Ripon, is leading the group of North Yorkshire MPs supporting the drive to improve broadband in the county. He has also been supporting the project in Darley, Blubberhouses and Appletreewick from the start. He said:
I am delighted that these communities now have the prospect of improved broadband access which is so key to residents and businesses. I pay particular tribute to the community leaders who have been instrumental in getting this scheme off the ground. I look forward to hearing about the impact higher speeds and more reliable connections are having in the coming months and years.
Each potential local network provided through the Connecting North Yorkshire project requires at least 50 connections to take it to the next stage. Residents will now have the opportunity to register their interest in being part of this or other schemes by completing the ‘need for speed’ survey at www.northyorks.gov.uk/broadbandsurvey
The second phase of Connecting North Yorkshire, to bring high speed broadband across North Yorkshire is currently going through a procurement process and the successful contractor will be appointed by June 2012.
More details on how rural communities can benefit from the Connecting North Yorkshire project are on the Council’s website www.northyorks.gov.uk/broadband