30
January
2015
|
00:00
Europe/Amsterdam

Superfast Lancashire blows into rural village of Brinscall

Digital Economy Minister praises achievement 

Local businesses say the technology is vital part of every working day
The Superfast Lancashire broadband network has been hailed a success by a Government minister as it reaches another rural outpost in Lancashire.

Brinscall, near Chorley, is the latest village to be reached by Superfast Lancashire and Ed Vaizey, Digital Economy Minister, was there yesterday (Thursday) to switch on the newest fibre broadband street cabinet, which can deliver superfast broadband to more than 240 homes and businesses.

Ed Vaizey who also toured Brinscall St John’s Primary School, said: "I’m delighted that homes and businesses in Brinscall have today joined the 105,000 other premises in Lancashire that our rollout of superfast broadband has already reached. The transformation of the UK's digital landscape is a key part of the Government's long term economic plan and our investment will help deliver faster and more reliable broadband to 97 per cent of Lancashire by the end of this year."

Superfast Lancashire is the partnership between Lancashire County Council (LCC) and BT rolling out high speed broadband across the county. When added to the commercial fibre broadband rollout by BT high-speed broadband will be available to 97 per cent of the county by the end of this year.

The £62.5m project consists of £30m from BT, £10.8m from Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK), £16.5m from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), £4.7m from Lancashire County Council and contributions from local councils – Blackburn with Darwen and Blackpool.

Among the Lancashire businesses delighted to see the arrival of the business transforming technology are the Buckshaw Business Hub in Chorley and Aware Communications, based at the Chorley Business and Technology Centre in nearby Euxton.

Jamie MacGregor, who runs the Buckshaw Business Hub, said: “We are bringing together firms, in this really new business zone, so they can learn from each other. The potential for Brinscall is superb. It will allow small and medium sized businesses to connect with business support, mentors and potential customers in a way they have been unable to before. When we organise events they are attended by blue chip companies like Waitrose right across the board to local plumbers. The hub will enable companies that depend on superfast broadband to locate their business in the stunning rural environment that Brinscall provides.”

Amelia Worrall, owner of marketing, design and PR firm Aware Communications, said: “As a small business owner working within the creative industry, fibre broadband plays a major part in each and every working day. Having a reliable high speed connection has improved my working processes as it has given me the ability to use file sharing, streaming and video conferencing effectively with clients.

“From a business continuity perspective, fibre has been highly advantageous as I am now able to use the cloud seamlessly for file storage and data backups. Even my accounting software is cloud based.”

Extending the network to Brinscall has been a complex engineering task and Openreach, the local network business, has had to use a special method called overblow to install 13 kilometres of the 15 kilometre spine to the village. The technique literally blows the cable through the existing ducting.

Steve Edwards, BT Group director for next generation access, said: “High-speed broadband is here,now in Brinscall and it is helping to create a new connected community. Engineers from BT’s local network business, Openreach, are working hard across Lancashire every day to bring fibre broadband to local communities along with the opportunities this creates for business, education and social inclusion. BT are proud to be working with Broadband Delivery UK and Lancashire County Council on a project that makes a real difference to communities such as this."

With more than 80 per cent of the county now able to access fibre broadband, businesses and home users have been taking advantage of all the benefits the network can bring.

Kim Snape, county councillor for Chorley Rural East, said: "The roll-out of high-speed broadband across the county as part of the Superfast Lancashire project is transforming lives for the better, particularly in our rural areas. Access to high-speed broadband is not only enabling businesses to thrive, it is also giving people access to educational and employment opportunities, as well as the host of entertainment options we are all coming to take for granted. I'm delighted to see these benefits brought to Brinscall."

Residents, who need to upgrade to fibre via their internet provider, can look forward to download speeds of up to 80 megabits per second and upload speeds of up to 20Mbps . This allows multiple users in a household to surf the internet, download and share large files of information, upload photographs, and download music, films and television programmes all at the same time, and more quickly than ever before.

ENDS


Notes to Editors
Superfast Lancashire’s Business Support Programme is governed by eligibility criteria defined by the ERDF (European Regional Development Fund) based on size, primary activity, turnover etc. Businesses will be expected to complete an initial short self-certification form which will be validated by one of the advisors.

The programme will link with other key support initiatives across Lancashire. This will enable businesses to gain from the extended benefits of complementary programmes such as Regenerate Pennine Lancashire, subject to not having exceeded their ERDF allowance.

The Business Support Programme is funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) in partnership with Superfast Lancashire.
B
T is contributing £30 million to the Superfast Lancashire project whilst £10.8 million will come from Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK), £16.5 million from the European Regional Development Fund and £5.2 million from local councils (£4.7m from LCC, £300,000 from Blackburn with Darwen Council and £230,000 from Blackpool Council).

This project is part financed by the North West 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

https://www.gov.uk/erdf-programmes-and-resources#north-west

Superfast Britain is a Government programme of investment in broadband and communication infrastructure across the UK. Run by the Department of Culture, Media and Sport, this investment helps businesses to grow, creates jobs and will make Britain more competitive in the global race. The portfolio is comprised of three elements:
• £780m to extend superfast broadband to 95% of the UK by 2017
• £150m to provide high speed broadband to businesses in 22 cities
• £150m to improve quality and coverage of mobile phone and basic data network services

Administered on behalf of Government by Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK), Superfast Britain is transforming Britain by promoting growth, enabling skills and learning, and improving quality of life.

For further information: https://www.gov.uk/broadband-delivery-uk