Superfast broadband boost in St Ives

St Ives is celebrating increased fibre broadband coverage with the announcement of a further 830 businesses and homes now having access to the high-speed technology. 

Engineering work recently completed by the Superfast Cornwall programme, as part of the big fibre build, means that the town centre and surrounding areas have now been included in the roll-out programme. More than three quarters (78 per cent) of homes and businesses in St Ives can now connect to internet speeds of up to 80Mbps*. 

The St Ives School of Painting is one of the first in the centre of St Ives to place an order and has ambitious plans for improved superfast internet speeds. 

The school was opened in 1938 by two budding artists, who after surviving the horrors of WW1, committed themselves to pursuing their passion for painting. They chose St Ives for its inspiring scenery and light. Now a registered Charitable Trust, The St Ives School of Painting has over time evolved to what it is today, teaching a wide range of styles and subjects to a very diverse audience but still focussed on the founders’ original aims. 

Through the use of superfast broadband the school will now be able to take its program to the next level, to serve a truly global audience with clients both nationally and internationally benefiting from the knowledge held there. 

Jane Cowans, marketing and office manager, said: “The benefits of superfast broadband are twofold for us, both the school as a business and our customers will benefit from the use of this cutting edge technology.” 

Jane continues: “With superfast broadband, we can introduce a Cloud based solution for the business which will allow the staff to work remotely when needed and free up the small amount of office space we have in the building, as well as giving more flexibility to staff. 

“For our customers, we can now offer exciting new services such as live streaming of lectures, exhibitions and collaborative sessions with other venues. We feel this will be invaluable in the after care for our students. 

“Many of the visitors we have to St Ives School of Painting will attend courses for 3-5 days and with the use of superfast broadband we are looking at ways to keep in contact and allow the artists to feel a real part of the studio’s programmes and continuing development. Using online meeting portals we plan to host post course sessions, either as refreshers or as ongoing tutorials. 

“A great number of large files are also sent and received via e mail. These are often images where quality can suffer if reduced in size. With superfast broadband we know we will be able to perform such actions without the need to reduce file sizes which is very important to the artists and lecturers.” 

Nigel Ashcroft, Superfast Cornwall’s programme director for Cornwall Development Company, Cornwall Council’s economic development company, added: “We are excited by the planned use of this technology by the St Ives School of Painting and look forward to superfast broadband helping Cornish artists showcase their talents and share their knowledge to a global truly audience.” 

Ranulf Scarbrough, Superfast Cornwall programme director for BT, said: “The Superfast Cornwall roll-out programme is continuing at a great pace, bringing fibre broadband to remote rural areas as well as town centre locations such as St Ives. The St Ives School of Painting is another great example of a Cornish business making the most of this exciting technology to expand its horizons and provide an improved service for its customers.” 

Superfast Cornwall is a pioneering partnership between the EU, Cornwall Council and BT which is bringing superfast fibre broadband to Cornwall. It is expected that 95 per cent of homes and businesses will have access to fibre broadband by the time the programme completes at the end of 2014. For more info, visit www.superfastcornwall.org 

Tim Andrewes, Cornwall Councillor for St Ives East, said: “This is a great example of how superfast broadband can not only help businesses to develop but can also enhance creativity and promote Cornwall on the world stage.” 

For more information contact: 
Mandy Feldon, Marketing Manager, Superfast Cornwall 
mandy@superfastcornwall.org 01209 311104 or 07896 436732 

Notes to editors: 
*These are the top wholesale speeds available to all service providers; speeds offered by service providers may vary. 

About the Convergence Programme 
The Superfast Cornwall programme is part financed by the Cornwall & Isles of Scilly Convergence European Regional Development Fund Programme 2007 to 2013. The Department for Communities and Local Government is the managing authority for the European Regional Development Fund Programme, which is one of the funds established by the European Commission to help local areas stimulate their economic development by investing in projects which will support local businesses and create jobs. For more information visit www.gov.uk/browse/business/funding-debt/european-regional-development-funding 
Project Investment: 
ERDF Convergence investment: Up to £53.5 million 
BT Investment: Up to £78.5 million 
TOTAL: Up to £132 million 
For more information visit www.erdfconvergence.org.uk 
About Cornwall Development Company 
Cornwall Development Company Ltd is the arms length economic development company for Cornwall Council. Further information is available at www.cornwalldevelopmentcompany.co.uk 
About Openreach 
Openreach is responsible for the last mile of the UK access network – the copper wires and fibre connecting homes and businesses to their local telephone exchanges. Openreach provides communications providers with services and products associated with that network. 
About BT 
BT is one of the world’s leading providers of communications services and solutions, serving customers in more than 170 countries. Its principal activities include the provision of networked IT services globally; local, national and international telecommunications services to its customers for use at home, at work and on the move; broadband, TV and internet products and services; and converged fixed/mobile products and services. BT consists principally of five lines of business: BT Global Services, BT Business, BT Consumer, BT Wholesale and Openreach. 
For the year ended 31 March 2013, BT Group’s reported revenue was £18,103m with reported profit before taxation of £2,315m. 
British Telecommunications plc (BT) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of BT Group plc and encompasses virtually all businesses and assets of the BT Group. BT Group plc is listed on stock exchanges in London and New York. 
For more information, visit www.btplc.com.