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Over £4m invested in next superfast broadband phase

Over £4m invested in next superfast broadband phase

12 August 2015

Plans for the second phase of the Northern Lincs Broadband (NLBB) project are well underway, which will reach a further 4,000 households and businesses. This had been made possible because of savings achieved from the first project and new investments - a total of over £4m.

It is expected that over £1m in savings will be made from the first phase of the NLBB project that was completed in June 2015. The final savings amount will be confirmed in September.

The second phase of the project is made up these savings and over £3m investment; nearly £2m from BT and £1.18m Government funding from Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK).

£1.1m* of the BT funding is reinvestment due to there being a higher take up of superfast broadband than expected from the first phase across Northern Lincolnshire. This additional investment is providing cashback that will be reinvested in the second phase.

This means that even more homes and businesses will be able to reap the many benefits of high-speed broadband by March 2017 - over 97 per cent of premises will have access.

The announcement comes on the same day as Government has announced the nationwide rollout of superfast broadband has now passed more than three million UK homes and businesses. The rollout is on track to reach 95 per cent of the UK by 2017 and is now reaching around 5,000 additional premises every day.

Digital Economy Minister Ed Vaizey said:

"We are transforming the digital landscape of the UK and our nationwide rollout of superfast broadband has now reached an additional three million UK homes and businesses. I congratulate Northern Lincs Broadband on having reached this milestone in Northern Lincolnshire so far - they’re making incredible progress."

Detailed rollout plans of the next NLBB phase will be announced in the coming months with the first communities included expected to benefit from the new technology from March 2016 onwards.

Communities across Northern Lincolnshire included in the next phase are Barrow, Barton, Crowle, Eastoft, Manton, Garthorpe, Howsham, Keadby, Scunthorpe, Whitton and Winterton – plus many more.

A map of the areas that will benefit from superfast broadband will be available soon.

Cllr Liz Redfern, Leader of North Lincolnshire Council, said

“Today’s announcement is a huge milestone for the superfast broadband. I am delighted that more homes and businesses across Northern Lincolnshire are going to be able to access high-speed broadband. The Government has invested heavily in Northern Lincolnshire. Gone are the days of dial-up internet - superfast broadband is the way forward. It provides unlimited benefits for both homes and businesses. We have received some really positive feedback from residents and businesses saying they have seen major differences in their internet speeds when doing a range of things, from watching catch-up TV on their tablets to downloading business files.

“The first phase of the project was a huge success. It was in the top six nationally for completing the rollout the quickest. I’m positive we will add to this success with the second phase. It is fantastic news that BT is providing additional funding due to the take up of broadband being higher than expected. This shows how successful the first phase was."

Bill Murphy, BT’s Managing Director for Next Generation Access, said:

“Today marks another very important stage in the rollout of an exciting technology, which is transforming the lives of communities across Yorkshire and The Humber and the UK as a whole.

“BT’s multi billion pound investment in superfast broadband through its involvement in partnerships and its own commercial programme has already made fibre broadband available to many hundreds of thousands of households and businesses in Northern Lincolnshire – and the number is continuing to grow rapidly. Our Openreach engineers are rolling out the technology at a world class pace, reaching thousands more premises every week.

“Successful broadband partnerships are creating a lasting legacy, which will play a key role in the future prosperity of communities for many years to come.”

The £7m NLBB project was set-up with the aim of providing high-speed fibre broadband access to around 92.5 per cent of Northern Lincolnshire by June 2015, which it has successfully done. The investment was made up of Government funding from BDUK, the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), North Lincolnshire Council and BT.

Over 31,000 properties were reached in the first phase, and they can now see major improvements to their broadband speeds – over 4,000 of which are businesses.

NLBB developed a free programme of business support to help eligible small businesses save time, money and improve efficiency. The programme of dedicated IT specialists and business advisers provided tailored support geared towards maximising the benefits of improved connectivity.

The Business Support team provided 3,000 hours of support to more than 450 local businesses across Northern Lincolnshire. 160 businesses completed the full programme.

Further information


* The £1.1m is being made available as a result of a “gain share” clause in the phase 1 BDUK contract BT agreed with North and North East Lincolnshire that allows the funding BT has received to be reinvested over a number of years into further coverage if take-up is better than the 20 per cent expected in BT’s original business case. This announcement is bringing forward that investment and making it available much earlier than planned.

Superfast Britain is a 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 per cent 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 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, visit the broadband delivery pages.  

About Northern Lincs Broadband

The Northern Lincs Broadband Programme is part financed by the European Regional Development Fund Programme 2007 to 2013. The Department for Communities and Local Government is the managing authority for the European Regional Development Fund Programme, which is one of the funds established by the European Commission to help local areas stimulate their economic development by investing in projects which will support local businesses and create jobs. For more information, visit the Communities website.


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 £17,979m with 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 the BT website.

 

First Published:12 August 2015