Manor Royal business welcome faster fibre broadband

Hundreds of businesses at Manor Royal in Crawley can now enjoy faster broadband speeds thanks to a collaboration between the West Sussex Better Connected project, BT and Manor Royal Business Improvement District (BID).

This announcement marks a half-way point in the roll out of Manor Royal’s new fibre broadband infrastructure as the first fibre cabinets go ‘live’ across the business district.

The Better Connected multi-million pound partnership is jointly funded by West Sussex County Council, BT and the Government’s Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK). Its aim is to extend fibre broadband coverage to those areas which fall outside the private sector’s commercial fibre broadband plans.

Manor Royal Business Improvement District is working with the Better Connected partnership to achieve its goal of delivering 100% fibre broadband coverage across the 540 acre site, which is home to more than 500 companies. A combination of direct investment by the BID and the West Sussex Better Connected initiative will ensure that every business, new and existing, will be able to benefit from this improvement.

Trevor Williams,Thales UK and Chairman of Manor Royal Business District Limited is delighted at the project’s progress, said: “Our collaboration with West Sussex Better Connected and BT is an excellent example of what a good partnership can do. Due to the BID’s investment in this important infrastructure, companies located at Manor Royal are now able to take advantage of the latest technology. This has been a priority project for the BID team and we are delighted that the first phase of the project is now live. We look forward to celebrating 100% fibre coverage in the new year.”

One of the first businesses to sign up for the new faster broadband service is Split Image Ltd, a commercial photographic studio, whose managing director , Mark Curtis, is delighted with his new broadband connection.

“I’m over the moon that faster fibre broadband has finally arrived at Manor Royal,” he said.” As a company, we need to be able to send large video and image files to our customers quickly, wherever they are in the world. Previously, slow upload speeds were restricting the service we could offer. I had considered moving my business to another area because I couldn’t foresee a resolution to the problem of lack of faster broadband. Also, as a small business, we simply couldn’t afford the expense of commercially leased lines. But thanks to the BID focus on this problem and the partnership they were able to form with the West Sussex Better Connected project, we’re now able to enjoy a faster, more affordable and reliable broadband service. As a result, we definitely plan to stay.”

Lionel Barnard, Cabinet Member for Residents Services, said, “Faster broadband is a necessity for many companies, helping them to compete in national and international markets. By working in partnership with West Sussex Better Connected, Manor Royal will be able to transform broadband speeds for all of its businesses; securing its vibrancy as a major business district.”

Dave Axam, BT’s South East Regional Director commented, “This is great news for the Manor Royal business district and the joint partnership. High-speed broadband helps businesses grow, attracting inward investment and providing a boost to the local economy. Whatever you do on-line you can do it better with fibre broadband.”

For further information about the West Sussex Better Connected project visit:

Manor Royal cabinets now accepting orders for faster broadband services include:

Cabinets Crawley 62 and Crawley 112 serving premises in:
• Crompton Way
• Lloyds Court
• The Faraday Centre
• The Stanley Centre
• The Kelvin Business Centre
• Kelvin House
• Durand House
• Aurora House

Cabinet Crawley 134 serving premises in:
• Raleigh Court
• Magellan Terrace
• Crawley Goods Yard
• Gatwick Road

Cabinet Crawley 146 serving premises in:
• The Stanley Centre
• The Brunel Centre
• Newton Road

Cabinet Crawley 115 serving premises in:
• Fleming Way
• Sussex Manor Business Park P
• Priestly Way Crawley

Cabinet Crawley 49 serving premises in:
• The Imperial Centre
• Forgewood Industrial Estate
• Sterling Park
• Gatwick Road
• The Office Building, Gatwick Road

Businesses can check which cabinet they are connected to by clicking on the link below:

Faster broadband packages can then be ordered from internet service providers in the usual way.

Notes for editors

Welcoming the arrival of faster fibre broadband to Manor Royal Business District is:
Cllr Lionel Barnard, Cabinet Member for Residents Services; Dave Axam, BT’s South East Regional Director; Trevor Williams, Thales UK and MRBD Limited Chairman; Mark Curtis, MD, Split Image Ltd and Steve Sawyer, MRBD Limited Executive Director.

For further information

Enquiries from local media should be directed to West Sussex County Council Press Office on 033 022 24520.

Enquiries about Manor Royal Business District should be directed to Joanne Rogers, MRBD on 07974 773989.

Enquiries from trade publications about this news release should be made to the BT Regional Press Office on 0800 085 0660. All news releases can be accessed at the web site:http://www.btplc.com/News

About Manor Royal Business District

Manor Royal Business District is a key economic hub within the South East region and provides the employment foundation of both Crawley and the wider Gatwick Diamond area. It is home to more than 500 businesses providing jobs for 30,000 people, 18,000 of whom commute to the area from outside the town. By itself, Manor Royal accounts for 40 per cent of Crawley's total employment and, according to the Ratings list, provides over 700 individual rateable business units. It is a significant commercial areas and major contributor to the West Sussex, Gatwick Diamond and wider south east economy, adjacent to London Gatwick Airport.

About MRBD Limited

MRBD Limited is an independent not-for-profit company set up to represent and promote Manor Royal-based businesses. A company limited by guarantee, MRBD is responsible for managing and delivering the Manor Royal Business Improvement District (BID) using contributions from Manor Royal companies to reinvest in the area and generate additional funds to achieve its vision and objectives.

For more information visit www.manorroyal.org

About Better Connected
Better Connected is an exciting project to bring better, faster broadband to West Sussex.

West Sussex County Council has contracted with BT to build the necessary communications infrastructure to provide improved broadband services. The £20million project is being funded by West Sussex County Council, the Government and BT.

We aim for the majority of residents and businesses to be able to access fibre-based broadband speeds of 24Mbps by spring 2016.

The project builds on the continuing commercial deployment of better, faster broadband in the county and means that by spring 2016:
• More than 90% of properties in West Sussex will have access to NGA superfast fibre-based broadband infrastructure of a minimum of 24Mbps
• All properties in the areas which are eligible for funding through the project should be able to access basic broadband speeds of a minimum of 2Mbps.