Digital Scotland gets the royal treatment
Eyemouth’s recently crowned Herring Queen, Roma Peakman, was superfast in getting underway with her royal duties as she assisted welcoming fibre broadband to the town – thanks to Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband.
The town has more than 2,000 homes and businesses which can now access fibre services.PW Eyemouth Superfast Broadband 20
The premises in the area are among more than 365,000 across Scotland which can now access fibre broadband services at speeds of up to 80Mbps* as part of the £410 million Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband rollout.
Fibre broadband enables multiple users in a home or business to access the internet, download and share large files at the same time more quickly than ever before. In order to take advantage of the higher speeds now available, residents should contact their service provider.
The rollout is being delivered on the ground by engineers from BT’s local network business, Openreach. With more than 900 new cabinets now installed across Scotland to house the fibre connections, the project underpins the Scottish Government’s aim of delivering world class connectivity by 2020.PW Eyemouth Superfast Broadband 15
Roma, who received this year’s crown at the official ceremony on Saturday, helped with the celebrations - draped in her full traditional Herring Queen regalia and accompanied by her court - at the special event on Tuesday. She joined Bryan McGrath, Scottish Borders Council’s chief economic development officer, and members from the Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband programme, as they unveiled one of the new street cabinets that will serve part of the town.
On the day, residents were also able to attend a special drop-in event at the Home Arms Hotel car park, where representatives from the Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband programme were on hand to get people up to speed with the technology and provide advice on areas such as signing up with a service provider.
Attendees at the event also climbed aboard the new Digital Scotland Fibre Showcase, a specially-adapted vehicle which features all of the equipment used in the roll-out of fibre broadband. The unique vehicle includes equipment which is familiar to members of the public - like the new green street cabinets - as well as some of the things they don’t often see - like how fibre optic cables are ‘blown’ underground, as part of the deployment.
Scottish Borders Council (SBC) has contributed £8.4 million to the Digital Scotland rollout in addition to block funding from all the Scottish local authorities.
Councillor Stuart Bell, Scottish Borders Council’s Executive Member for Economic Development, said: “The Council invested £8.4million into the rollout of fibre broadband across the Scottish Borders and I am delighted that so many residents and businesses in Eyemouth are now able to access high-speed internet technology thanks to this programme.
“Superfast broadband opens up significant opportunities and benefits to businesses and residents. In addition to Eyemouth, fibre broadband is now available to a large number of properties in Berwickshire, including Ayton, Chirnside, Coldstream, Duns and Leitholm.”
Sara Budge, Programme Director for Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband, said: “It’s great news that many residents and businesses in and around Eyemouth are now able to receive fibre broadband thanks to the programme.
“It was a huge honour to have the recently crowned Herring Queen to help us welcome broadband to the area. When signing up with a service provider, the difference that fibre broadband can make is amazing, giving much more flexibility whether it’s at work or in the home.”
BT is investing £126 million in the Digital Scotland programme, in addition to its commercial rollout of fibre broadband in Scotland.
Brendan Dick, BT Scotland director, said: “Thousands of people in Eyemouth now have access to their best ever broadband speeds, and more are set to follow. As the fibre network extends across the Scottish Borders, making the most of it is vital. I hope local people and businesses in the area will soon be taking advantage of all the opportunities on offer.”
Users can check the interactive map on the Digital Scotland website (/whereandwhen) to find out if they can get the service and further information is also available on Twitter @ScotSuperfast or Facebook at www.facebook.com/scotlandsuperfast