Access to secure and reliable superfast broadband is now a part of our daily lives, and we all know the frustration when there’s a problem with the line. I am also aware that, for some South Northants residents, the rollout of superfast broadband hasn’t happened yet, and they are struggling with slower and older connections.
I am very happy to take up specific “not-spot” areas on behalf of groups or to raise individual concerns about broadband connectivity. Indeed, I know that Wootton Parish Council is working very proactively with the County Council to find a solution, and I have been pleased to facilitate meetings on their behalf to achieve this, as well as to raise the issue with the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport; residents in Wootton are grateful for the Parish Council’s continued efforts on their behalf. Similarly, I was very pleased when, working with the Parish Meeting, we managed to secure the rollout of superfast broadband via Gigaclear to Hinton-in-the-Hedges.
At present, 95.69 per cent of premises in South Northants have access to superfast broadband (defined as speeds greater than 24 Mbps) and 25.29 per cent have access to ultrafast broadband (greater than 100 Mbps). The County Council, through their Superfast Northants project, are targeting 99 per cent o the County to have access to superfast broadband and 65 per cent to ultrafast by the end of March 2021. You can find out more about the project, and see when you can expect to access these speeds if you can’t already, on their website: www.superfastnorthamptonshire.net
I am in regular contact with both the District Council and the County Council on behalf of specific communities and individuals, and recently I have written to both councils again to ask what more we can do together to accelerate the rollout in South Northants. You can read these letters below:
Letter to South Northants Council | 8th April 2019
Response from South Northants Council | 8th May 2019
Letter to Northants Council Council | 10th May 2019
You may be interested to know that local businesses and communities can access Gigabit Broadband Vouchers, launched in March 2018 by the Local Full Fibre Networks, to help contribute to the installation of faster connections. If you an SME, you can claim a voucher worth up to £2,500 and residents can claim a voucher worth £500 as part of a group community scheme. You can find more information on the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport website: gigabitvoucher.culture.gov.uk
If I can be of any help, or answer any particular question, please do get in touch.