UK gov divides up super-fast broadband fund

15 August 2011 |


The UK government is set to announce how its $863.1 million pot for superfast broadband will be distributed.

This announcement comes as part of the government’s broadband strategy to deliver broadband speeds of at least 2Mbps to 90% of the population in each local authority by 2015. The money will be allocated across 40 areas of the UK with a further $488.6 million promised after 2015.

The government hopes that telcos will add to its initial investment. Former incumbent BT is investing over $4 billion with the aim to cover two thirds of homes by 2015.

Certain areas of the UK have already been told how much they are getting from the government’s lump sum. Wales, for example, has been allocated $92.6 million with the hope that the Welsh government will match the investment to help reach the most remote communities. Also the English counties of Wiltshire, Norfolk, Devon and Somerset will have $81.4 million divided between them as well as receiving support from local authorities and private investors.

As the country’s broadband plans get underway some areas have taken it upon themselves to raise the funds for broadband services. According to UK press, Cornwall has raised almost $215 million to cover 90% of homes by 2014.

The UK government has been under pressure to enhance its broadband network and catch up with its European neighbours such as Finland where broadband access is now a human right. UK telcos have also come under fire from regulator Ofcom last month after it found that the average UK broadband speed was 6.8Mbps, which is considerably lower than speeds advertised by ISPs. To read Capacity’s full coverage of the story click here.