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Carol Monaghan MP urges constituents to connect with Digital Scotland

Press release   •   Sep 19, 2016 12:00 BST

Carol Monaghan MP unwraps Drumchapel's latest superfast broadband

Carol Monaghan MP is getting behind the roll-out of high-speed broadband in her Glasgow North West constituency – where more fibre has recently gone live thanks to the Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband programme.

Thousands of households and businesses in the Glasgow North West area can now access high-speed fibre services through the £410 million Digital Scotland roll-out, with around 300 more premises in Drumchapel among the latest to be reached.

According to the independent Think Broadband website, nearly 99 per cent of premises in the constituency are now able to access fibre broadband speeds of 30Mbps or above.

Across Scotland, more than 640,000 premises are now able to connect to fibre-based services through the Digital Scotland project, led by the Scottish Government and Highlands and Islands Enterprise in their area and delivered on the ground by Openreach, BT’s local network business.

Other partners in the project include the UK Government through Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK), Glasgow City Council and the European Regional Development Fund.

Carol Monaghan MP urged local people to consider the benefits of a high-speed fibre broadband connection, which can be ordered through their chosen service provider, as upgrades are not automatic.

She visited a local fibre cabinet on Southbrae Drive to explore the engineering behind the technology and hosted a digital drop-in session in her local constituency office to help constituents find out more.

She said: “Fibre broadband has an essential role to play in everyone’s lives – whether at home or in business. It’s great news that thousands of local people across Glasgow North West can now connect to this exciting technology if they choose.

“Broadband speed is a subject close to the heart of many of my constituents, and it’s good to see today the excellent progress that’s being made.

“The arrival of fibre broadband means local people and firms can do more online at faster speeds and on multiple devices and there’s lots of evidence to show it boosts the local economy.

“I look forward to fibre broadband being rolled out across the rest of my constituency.”

The Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband programme will deliver access to fibre broadband to around 95% of premises by the end of March 2018, when combined with existing commercial roll-out plans. It underpins the Scottish Government’s aim for Scotland to become a world class digital nation by 2020.

BT is investing £126m in the partnership on top of its commercial investments in Scotland.

Liz Mallinson, BT Scotland’s Fibre Broadband Director, said: “Across the Openreach network, more than two million Scottish premises can now connect to high-speed fibre broadband and, on average, about one in four households have made the move to the faster speeds now available.

“Driving strong take-up is especially important in areas covered by the Digital Scotland programme, as high adoption rates will trigger the release of further funds for investment into the network. We very much welcome Carol Monaghan MP’s efforts to highlight the many benefits this technology offers to her constituents.

“As the UK is one of the most competitive broadband markets in the world, with dozens of providers offering services, people may be pleasantly surprised when they look into the costs of an upgrade.”

Sara Budge, Director of Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband, said: “More and more areas of Glasgow North West are now live thanks to the programme. It’s important that people realise that in order to take advantage of the benefits that fibre brings, you need to sign up with a service provider.

“Whatever you’re doing online, you can do it better and faster with fibre. Whether it’s shopping, downloading music and video, watching TV, social networking, studying or researching homework, once you’ve switched to fibre you’ll never look back.”

Fibre broadband offers fast and reliable connections at speeds of up to 80Mbps* and there are many suppliers in the marketplace to choose from.

Further information about the Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband roll-out in Glasgow can be found at http://www.scotlandsuperfast.com/glasgow and more details on BT’s commercial roll-out are at www.superfast-openreach.co.uk

Ends

*These are the top wholesale speeds available from Openreach to all service providers; speeds offered by service providers may vary.

Notes to editors

Due to the current network topography and the economics of deployment, it is likely that not all premises within selected exchange areas will be able to access fibre-based broadband at the same point in the roll-out. Further announcements will be made as more areas are able to access the growing fibre infrastructure.

About BDUK

Superfast Britain is a UK Government programme of investment in broadband and

communication infrastructure across the UK. Run by the Department of Culture, Media and Sport, this investment helps businesses to grow, creates jobs and will make Britain more competitive in the global race. The portfolio is comprised of three elements:

  • £780m to extend superfast broadband to 95% of the UK by 2017
  • £150m to provide high speed broadband to businesses in 22 cities
  • £150m to improve quality and coverage of mobile phone and basic data networkservices

Administered on behalf of Government by Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK), Superfast Britain is transforming Britain by promoting growth, enabling skills and learning, and improving quality of life.

For further information: https://www.gov.uk/broadband-delivery-uk

About BT

BT’s purpose is to use the power of communications to make a better world. It is one of the world’s leading providers of communications services and solutions, serving customers in 180 countries. Its principal activities include the provision of networked IT services globally; local, national and international telecommunications services to its customers for use at home, at work and on the move; broadband, TV and internet products and services; and converged fixed-mobile products and services.BT consists of six customer-facing lines of business: Consumer, EE, Business and Public Sector, Global Services, Wholesale and Ventures, and Openreach.

For the year ended 31 March 2016, BT Group’s reported revenue was £19,042m with reported profit before taxation of £3,029m.

British Telecommunications plc (BT) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of BT Group plc and encompasses virtually all businesses and assets of the BT Group. BT Group plc is listed on stock exchanges in London and New York.

For more information, visit www.btplc.com