East Cambs bid for superfast broadband launched

SURFING the world wide web in East Cambridgeshire could soon become that bit quicker under ambitious plans unveiled this week by the county council.

The authority is hoping to put up �12 million towards an overall package investment of �70 million that will help boost internet speeds across the district.

It is hoped that, with the investment, 90 per cent of users will have access to superfast broadband – up to 25megabits a second – by 2015 with every household having access to speeds of at least two megabits per second by the same date.

The money for the project will be put forward by a partnership of private and public sector bodies including BT, Virgin Media and the Government.

The county council also said that all new housing developments of 50 dwellings or more will be challenged to include access to superfast broadband as part of the development.

A spokesman for the county council, said: “We want to make Cambridgeshire a business friendly county and we have a deficit in terms of access to superfast broadband that we want to address.

The spokesman said that the county council had already registered an expression of interest in obtaining funding from Government body Broadband UK, with a bid due to be entered in September.

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“It is still very early days in the process but what the bid does show is a sign of intent from the county council because we know how important this issue is to communities.”

Dave Hughes, BT’s East of England regional director, said:

“We have already made super-fast broadband available to almost 30,000 homes and businesses in Cambridgeshire.

“But some more challenging areas, mainly rural, less populated locations, will require the public and private sectors working together.”