£5 billion project to give hard-to-reach homes and businesses in Peterborough superfast broadband

Hundreds of homes and businesses in ‘hard-to-reach’ areas of Peterborough will be some of the first to benefit from a £5 billion Government superfast broadband initiative.

Friday, 19th March 2021, 5:00 am
Updated Friday, 19th March 2021, 7:32 am
Work is to start next year to bring superfast broadband to hard-to-reach areas of Peterborough.

They will be among 140,000 premises chosen to get the fastest broadband possible as part of the country’s new Project Gigabit.

Work to install the connections will get underway next year.

It will bring broadband speeds of more than 1,000 megabits or one gigabit per second.

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It means families will no longer having to battle over bandwidth and will give people in rural areas the freedom to live and work more flexibly.

The 140,000 premises are spread across the county and parts of Northamptonshire, Rutland, Essex and Hertfordshire.

Mayor of Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Combined Authority, James Palmer, said: “Cambridgeshire and Peterborough has an ambitious agenda to optimise private and public sector investment in future-facing connectivity to underpin the region’s economic strength, support businesses and communities, and deliver sustainable public services.

“We are delighted that our area will be at the forefront of the government’s Project Gigabit, working with neighbouring counties to bring next-generation gigabit capable broadband to the hardest to reach areas, which will ensure that businesses and communities can access the latest digital technology wherever they are.

“This is a demonstration of our shared commitment to deliver the infrastructure, both physical and digital, that we need in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, and the importance of our area to the national economic picture.”

The initiative will prioritise buildings that currently have the slowest connections and which would otherwise have been left behind in broadband companies’ rollout plans.

Digital Infrastructure Minister Matt Warman said: “To build back better we need to smash the digital divide and unleash the true potential of our rural communities, and I’m delighted that Cambridgeshire and Peterborough will be among the first areas to benefit from our vast rollout of lightning-fast gigabit connections.

“Project Gigabit will put hard-to-reach areas and those suffering from slow speeds first in line for these next-generation speeds.

“In our increasingly digital world, upgrading rural communities is a national priority, and is why we’re investing £5 billion to get the job done.”

Gigabit-capable broadband connections offer the fastest and most reliable speeds available.

They will pave the way for new social benefits alongside jobs and economic growth and enhance rural communities by giving people the freedom to live and work more flexibly.

A Gigabit Broadband Voucher scheme is being extended with a £210 million cash injection to give people in rural areas immediate financial help to get gigabit speeds.

The government is also making £110 million available to connect public sector buildings in the countryside - such as GP surgeries, libraries and schools - with the new infrastructure.