BT has announced a further major investment in North Yorkshire, pledging to roll-out its £2.5 billion high-speed fibre broadband network to 26,000 more homes and businesses.
Acomb, Cross Hills, Starbeck and West Ayton are the latest North Yorkshire communities to benefit and are due to be upgraded in 2013.
And high-speed fibre broadband is now available to more than 3500 first homes and businesses in Filey.
The latest investment will take the total number of homes and businesses in North Yorkshire able to connect to the fibre network to 170,000 by the end of 2013. More than 134,000 already have access in upgraded areas.
And plans are under way to roll-out the high-speed technology even more widely. Superfast North Yorkshire, an ambitious partnership between North Yorkshire County Council and BT, aims to make world class broadband speeds available to 90 per cent of North Yorkshire homes and businesses by the end of 2014.
North Yorkshire is the first county in the UK successfully to deploy Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) funds. This, alongside ERDF funding, will be used to extend the roll-out of fibre broadband across the county. The project will reach those areas outside of BT’s commercial roll-out using a partnership approach to ensure all communities have access to the fastest possible broadband speeds.
Trevor Higgins, BT regional partnership director for Yorkshire and the Humber, said:
Fibre broadband opens up a whole new, high speed world. BT’s own commercial plans and the Superfast North Yorkshire project are major investments that will help North Yorkshire to overcome the current economic challenges and take full advantage of the upturn when it comes.
Digital technology is fundamental to how we live and work – and in an increasingly connected world, high-speed communications will become even more essential in the years ahead. Research 2 suggests fibre broadband could give a £143 million boost to a typical town’s economy and create 225 new jobs and 140 new businesses within 15 years.
The fibre broadband network we’re building today will underpin the local economy for many years to come.
The arrival of fibre broadband in each of these new locations will revolutionise the way people use the internet for work, education and connecting with public services.
Councillor Carl Les, chairman of Superfast North Yorkshire, said:
I strongly welcome this announcement that BT will be bringing fibre-based broadband to more communities in North Yorkshire. This news comes at an exciting time for the county. Only recently, the first communities to benefit from the Superfast North Yorkshire project were announced. And this was little more than a month after the signing of the contract with BT.
Fast broadband is an essential tool for local businesses and will be a catalyst for the creation of new jobs by making the county an even more attractive place for businesses to start-up and invest. It will also transform the lives of local families, whether they’re using the technology for social networking, entertainment or education.
BT’s local network business Openreach is making fibre broadband available to around two-thirds of UK homes and businesses on a commercial basis by the end of 2014 3 using a mix of fibre to the cabinet (FTTC) and fibre to the premises (FTTP) technologies. More than 11 million premises can already access fibre broadband and that number is growing all the time.
Both technologies offer speeds many times faster than the current UK average, reported by the regulator Ofcom to be 9Mbps. FTTC, where fibre is delivered to new street cabinets, offers download speeds of up to 80Mbps and upload speeds of up to 20Mbps.
FTTP, where fibre runs all the way to homes and businesses, offers a variety of download speeds with the current top speed being 330Mbps4. From Spring 2013 BT aims to make speeds of 330Mbps5 available on demand in any area where FTTC has been deployed 4.
Internet users with a fibre broadband connection can do much more online, all at the same time. A family can download a movie, watch a TV replay service, surf the net and play games online simultaneously. A whole album can be downloaded in less than 30 seconds and a feature length HD movie in less than 10 minutes, whilst high-resolution photos can be uploaded to Facebook in seconds.
The upload speeds are the fastest widely available to consumers in the UK, with large video and data files being sent almost instantly and hi-resolution photos posted online in seconds. And high quality voice and video calls mean businesses can keep in touch with customers while they cut down on travel.
For further information on Openreach’s fibre broadband programme visit www.superfast-openreach.co.uk
Locations in Yorkshire and the Humber included in today’s announcement:
Acomb, Crosshills, Starbeck, West Ayton, Aston Common, Goldthorpe, Hatfield Woodhouse, High Green, Penistone, Rotherham North, Batley, Crofton, Heckmondwike, Huddersfield, Slaithwaite, Laisterdyke, Queensbury and Todmorden.