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New £2.31 Million deal will deliver superfast fibre broadband to thousands more homes and businesses across Staffordshire

Press release   •   Jun 04, 2015 11:20 BST

Around 4,000 more homes and businesses across Staffordshire will be able to receive high-speed fibre broadband following an additional £2.31 million of funding announced today.

The project will extend the Superfast Staffordshire partnership roll-out which began connecting the first homes and businesses to faster fibre broadband just over a year ago. Since then it has enabled more than 43,000 premises to have access to high-speed fibre broadband.

The new deal injects further funding into the County Council’s contract with BT, with a further £1.68m coming from the Department for Culture, Media and Sport’s Superfast Extension Programme (SEP) and £630,000 from BT.

The communities to benefit from this new funding will include: Calton, Dunstall, Ellenhall, Hanbury, Harlaston, Marston, Newborough, Rangemoor, Swindon, Tattenhill, Wetton, Whitgreave and Yarlet.

People can follow the progress of the roll-out via the Superfast Staffordshire website: www.superfaststaffordshire.co.uk and via Twitter @superfaststaffs

Planning and surveying on the new phase will begin next year and engineers from Openreach – BT’s local network business - will start building and installing the fibre and structures in 2017, expanding the reach of fibre alongside the Superfast Staffordshire programme already underway.

Residents and businesses choosing to upgrade will be able to get download speeds of up to 80 megabits per second (Mbps) and upload speeds of up to 20Mbps*. Because the Openreach network is ‘open’, people will be able to choose from a range of broadband service providers. There are more than 140 fibre providers currently operating in the UK.

County Councillor Mark Winnington, Cabinet Member for Economy, Environment and Transport, said: “The Superfast Staffordshire project has been a huge success and is making a big difference to thousands of people across the county. Our target was to ensure 95 per cent of properties could connect to superfast broadband by mid-2016 and we’re on schedule to achieve that. We always said we would work hard to reach the remaining five per cent and this extra funding means we can connect to an additional 4,000 homes which is great news for those communities. The programme continues to gather pace, increasing opportunities, accessibility and economic growth. We know we took the right decision in investing in Superfast Staffordshire.”

Bill Murphy, BT’s managing director of next generation access, said: “Every day the internet is touching our lives in new and exciting ways, which is why it’s so important that we’re now able to ensure even more rural communities have the opportunity to benefit from the technology.

“Whether it’s people working from home, small businesses wanting to share lots of information with their suppliers and customers, or families connecting different devices to the internet at the same time – everything is easier, faster and better with fibre broadband.

“The Superfast Staffordshire roll-out is continuing to progress extremely well and our project teams are working hard to ensure more homes and businesses have access to faster fibre broadband as quickly as possible.”

Ends

Note to Editors

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

Issued by Staffordshire County Council and BT.

For further information about this news release Tom Hobbins at the Staffordshire County Council press office on 01785 276832 or email: tom.hobbins@staffordshire.gov.uk

OrEmma Tennant at the BT Regional press office on 0800 085 0660 or email: emma.tennant@bt.com

All BT news releases can be read at www.bt.com/newscentre

Photos of the roll-out of Superfast Staffordshire can be downloaded for free from: https://flic.kr/s/aHsk1eZqD3

About Superfast Staffordshire

Superfast Staffordshire is a partnership between Staffordshire County Council, BDUK and BT. It builds on the commercial roll-outs in the county.

The first phase of the Superfast Staffordshire roll-out programme represents an investment of more than £27 million (£7.44 million from Staffordshire County Council, £7.44m from the Government’s Broadband Delivery UK and £12.47m from BT.)

For those premises not included in the fibre footprint, Superfast Staffordshire is aiming to improve broadband speeds using alternative technologies.

About Superfast Britain

Superfast Britain is a Government programme of investment in broadband and communication infrastructure across the UK. Run by the Department for 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:

  1. £790m to extend superfast broadband to 95% of the UK by 2017;
  2. £150m to provide high speed broadband to businesses in 22 cities; and
  3. £150m to improve quality and coverage of mobile phone and basic data network services.

    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 more than 170 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 principally of five customer-facing lines of business: BT Global Services, BT Business, BT Consumer, BT Wholesale and Openreach.

    For the year ended 31 March 2015, BT Group’s reported revenue was £17,979mwith reported profit before taxation of £2,645m.

    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.