Superfast broadband on the way for thousands more Scottish homes

Three million UK superfast broadband milestone reached as Scottish rollout speeds past the half way mark

The next stage of the £410 million Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband rollout is set to reach 73,000 more homes and businesses nationwide.

The premises are located in 24 local authority areas all across Scotland, from Bressay in Shetland to Dolphinton in the Scottish Borders.

Among the places getting high speed fibre for the first time are some of the small communities and towns around Loch Ness and the picturesque Highland fishing village of Mallaig.

Communities in Midlothian, Clackmannanshire and the Falkirk area will also benefit, as the Digital Scotland rollout reaches the three local authority areas for the first time.

The first connections will start to go live by the end of this year, as engineers from BT’s local network business, Openreach, continue work on the ground. A full list of the latest locations is at the end of this release.

The announcement comes on the same day as the UK Government announced the UK-wide rollout of superfast broadband has now passed more than three million UK homes and businesses. The rollout is on track to reach 95 per cent of the UK by 2017 and is now reaching around 5,000 additional premises every day.

The Digital Scotland rollout has passed more than 394,000 premises since it started last year. It means the project is more than half way to its target of making the technology available to 750,000 properties by the end of March 2018.

Fibre broadband enables multiple users in a home or business to access the internet, download and share large files at the same time and more quickly than ever before. As the higher speeds (up to 80Mbps*) become available, anyone interested in signing up for fibre-based services should contact their broadband service provider.

Scottish Government Deputy First Minister John Swinney said: “It is fantastic news that a further 73,000 homes and businesses will be able to receive fibre broadband thanks to the Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband programme.Every day we are continuing to build on our digital infrastructure –supporting the Scottish Government’s commitment to deliver first-rate connectivity in Scotland by 2020, ensuring we are a world class digital nation.

“By reaching out to those communities who would not have been covered by the commercial market – in towns and into some of our most rural areas – we are ensuring that the connections which are made will bring many benefits to the Scottish people both at home and in business.”

Digital Economy Minister Ed Vaizey said: "Our nationwide rollout of superfast broadband has now reached more than 3 million homes and businesses in the UK, with more than 394,000 in Scotland alone now able to connect to the new fibre network. The UK Government is investing £120m to roll out superfast broadband in Scotland and I'm delighted at the tremendous progress being made which will see around 95 per cent of Scotland able to access superfast speeds by March 2018."

The new locations announcement follows news earlier this week that almost £18 million will be made available in Scotland to take the rollout of fibre broadband further.

Brendan Dick, director of BT Scotland, said: “We’re making good headway with the Digital Scotland rollout, passing 7,000 more premises a week. Coupled with our commercial upgrades it means more than 1.7 million Scottish homes and businesses can now choose to connect with much higher speeds.

“Across the UK, 23 million premises are now covered by BT’s open access network, with three million of those enabled under the BDUK programme. Our Openreach engineers have worked tirelessly to connect some of the most remote parts of Scotland, from Shetland and the Hebrides to Rothesay in Argyll and Bute.

“On the back of strong take-up of fibre services in partnership areas, BT is releasing additional funds which will enable us to go even further at no extra cost to the taxpayer much earlier than originally expected. Around £17.8 million is available for Scotland to help us reach even more communities like the ones we’re announcing today.”

Users can check the interactive map on the Digital Scotland website (http://www.digitalscotland.org/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


*These are the top wholesale speeds available from Openreach to all service providers; speeds offered by service providers may vary.

Notes to editors

Due to the current network topography, and the economics of deployment, it is likely that not all premises within selected exchange areas will be able to access fibre-based broadband at the same point in the roll-out. Further announcements will be made as more areas are able to access the growing fibre infrastructure.

Our deployment plans are subject to change. The expectations reflected in this plan are reasonable, but because our rollout involves risks and uncertainties, actual results may differ from those expressed or implied.

Areas being announced: * These exchanges feature twice because they serve premises in more than one local authority area. ** Infill is where the project is providing additional fibre broadband coverage in areas which already have existing or planned fibre coverage.

Location(rest of Scotland)Local AuthorityInfill?Location(rest of Scotland)Local AuthorityInfill?
Letham; AngusAngusGauldryFife
ArrocharArgyll and ButeKincardine*Fife
AuldgirthDumfries and GallowayLundin LinksFife
CollinDumfries and GallowayDalkeithMidlothianYes
Dalmellington*Dumfries and GallowayFordMidlothian
DalryDumfries and GallowayGorebridgeMidlothianYes
DunragitDumfries and GallowayLoanheadMidlothianYes
GarliestonDumfries and GallowayPenicuikMidlothianYes
Johnstone BridgeDumfries and GallowayWest Linton*Midlothian
KirkcolmDumfries and GallowayArdrossan-SaltcoatsNorth AyrshireYes
KirkcowanDumfries and GallowayKilwinningNorth AyrshireYes
KirkinnerDumfries and GallowayKilsyth*North LanarkshireYes
LangholmDumfries and GallowayBurreltonPerth and Kinross
LeadhillsDumfries and GallowayDunkeldPerth and Kinross
Dalmellington*East AyrshireAshkirkScottish Borders
PatnaEast AyrshireBirghamScottish Borders
Kilsyth*East DunbartonshireYesBlainslieScottish Borders
DunbarEast LothianYesDolphintonScottish Borders
East LintonEast LothianEttrick BridgeScottish Borders
MusselburghEast LothianYesGreenlawScottish Borders
AbbeyhillEdinburgh, City ofYesJedburghScottish Borders
LeithEdinburgh, City ofYesKelsoScottish BordersYes
LibertonEdinburgh, City ofYesPeeblesScottish BordersYes
NewingtonEdinburgh, City ofYesWest Linton*Scottish Borders
PortobelloEdinburgh, City ofYesYetholmScottish Borders
South Queensferry* Edinburgh, City ofYesGirvanSouth AyrshireYes
BanknockFalkirkBiggarSouth Lanarkshire
BonnybridgeFalkirkYesTintoSouth Lanarkshire
FalkirkFalkirkYesBroxburnWest LothianYes
LarbertFalkirkYesLivingston Station West LothianYes
FalkirkFalkirkYesSouth Queensferry*West LothianYes
Location (Highlands & Islands)Local AuthorityInfill?Location (Highlands & Islands)Local AuthorityInfill?
DunoonArgyll and ButeYesGlenurquhartHighland
BettyhillHighlandMallaig MorarHighland
Fort AugustusHighlandHillswickShetland Islands
FoyersHighlandSullom VoeShetland IslandsYes
GlenmoristonHighlandStornowayWestern IslesYes