23
August
2016
|
11:54
Europe/Amsterdam

RT meets up with BT to discuss superfast broadband across the Vale

Summary
The roll-out of superfast fibre broadband across the Vale of Glamorgan was top of the agenda during a recent meeting between BT Cymru Wales regional director, Alwen Williams, and the leader of the Welsh Conservatives, Andrew RT Davies AM, earlier this week.

The roll-out of superfast fibre broadband across the Vale of Glamorgan was top of the agenda during a recent meeting between BT Cymru Wales regional director, Alwen Williams, and the leader of the Welsh Conservatives, Andrew RT Davies AM, earlier this week.

The Assembly Member for South Wales Central met up last week with BT at the telephone exchange in Bridgend – which, in addition to being the main telephone and broadband connections hub for large parts of South Wales, is the base for all the detailed planning work that goes into rolling out fibre broadband across the county.

During the meeting, Andrew RT Davies AM was given an update on the roll-out of fibre broadband across the county, some of the different technologies being used to reach the more rural parts of the Vale in addition to some of the challenges.

Nearly nine out ten homes and businesses in the Vale of Glamorgan (89.2 per cent) can now access superfast broadband speeds of 30 megabits per second (Mbps) when both Superfast Cymru and the private sector’s commercial fibre roll-out are combined.

The high-speed technology allows the average household to do more online – from checking accounts, making payments, researching homework, entertainment and streaming videos. Businesses also benefit as the internet opens up new markets, while costs should come down as faster broadband speeds will increase efficiency.

Alwen Williams, regional director for BT Cymru Wales, said: “There’s a great deal of work going on in the Vale for Glamorgan to bring superfast broadband to those that live and work here.

“Engineers from BT’s local network business, Openreach, are out every day in all weathers giving more and more homes and businesses access to superfast broadband across the county and we’re seeing the benefits as nearly nine out of ten properties can already place an order for superfast broadband today.

“But we also know there’s more to do. We appreciate that the wait for faster broadband can be frustrating, but great progress is being made with this huge engineering project and this meeting was an opportunity to show that we’re still going as hard as we can to reach those that are still waiting for this service.”

Andrew RT Davies AM said: “I was pleased to meet with the team at BT and discuss some of the issues regularly raised with me by constituents and businesses across the Vale of Glamorgan.

“Improving internet coverage, and take-up across the Vale is critical to enhancing connectivity, supporting our economic prospects and reducing rural isolation.

“For many years residents and businesses have had to endure stuttering speeds and an intermittent service, however, I was heartened to learn of some of the progress being made by BT across the Vale of Glamorgan and beyond.

“As the regional AM I have campaigned vigorously to ensure every town and village across the Vale can benefit from the economic advantages that high speed broadband offers and this will only continue.”

Superfast Cymru is a partnership between the Welsh Government and BT, with additional funding from Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) and the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).

It is bringing superfast broadband speeds to parts of Wales which would otherwise not receive it.

The Superfast Cymru programme is a huge undertaking that involves Openreach engineers laying 17,500kms of optical fibre cable and installing around 3,000 new green roadside cabinets.

If households and businesses are able to receive fibre broadband, the upgrade will not happen automatically and they should contact their internet service provider (ISP) to order the service.

Those people who cannot receive superfast broadband through Superfast Cymru can receive grants to have faster broadband in other ways, such as satellite.

Further details on these schemes are available on: gov.wales/broadband