Warwickshire Village celebrates being first into the super-fast lane

Snitterfield is first rural community to benefit from multi-million pound 
CSW Broadband partnership; 
Children show they have designs on new fibre optic broadband 

Residents in a picturesque Warwickshire village today celebrated becoming the first rural community in the county to benefit from the multi-million pound CSW Broadband partnership. 

Pupils from Snitterfield Primary School joined Nadhim Zahawi MP, representatives from Warwickshire County Council, Stratford-upon-Avon District Council, BT and other local people to mark the ‘switch on’ of super-fast fibre broadband. 

Villagers can now enjoy download speeds of up to 80 megabits per second and upload speeds of up to 20Mbps*, enabling them to share large files of information, upload photographs, download music and surf the internet faster than ever before. 

Snitterfield Primary School – situated at the heart of the village – suddenly found itself at the heart of the new communications network after engineers working for Openreach – BT’s local network business – installed one of the new super-fast road-side cabinets right outside the school. It is one of three needed to connect more than 840 homes and businesses in Snitterfield to the new fibre optic network. 

To celebrate the arrival of super-fast broadband, pupils are taking part in a poster design competition, depicting what they enjoy most about the internet, as well as learning first-hand about the new fibre optic broadband technology from Openreach apprentice engineer, James Reidy. 

The arrival of super-fast fibre broadband was welcomed by head teacher, Sue Ogden, who said: “The internet is a vital educational tool and pupils are encouraged to use it to support their learning both at school and at home, but it’s frustrating if we can’t do things as quickly as we’d like to, so the arrival of super-fast broadband is a welcome boost for us all – teachers and pupils alike.” 

CSW Broadband is a £15.47 million partnership between Warwickshire County Council and its five district and borough councils, with Coventry City Council, Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council, BT and the 
Government’s Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) programme. 

Councillor Alan Cockburn, Deputy Leader of Warwickshire County Council, said: “The advent of super-fast broadband will make a real difference to the residents and businesses of Snitterfield. From today people can order the new service from their existing Internet Service Provider, or they can choose from a wide range of providers offering a selection of services including bundled telephone calls and even sport or TV on demand. This is just the start of the superfast broadband rollout in Warwickshire. Over the next few months we will be seeing many more areas being connected to the new fibre network and it is good to see the work of the CSW Broadband team coming to fruition.” 

Steve Henderson, BT’s regional director for broadband partnerships, said: “CSW Broadband is a huge engineering project, but the roll-out is progressing extremely well. Today’s announcement marks the start of the deployment throughout the CSW Broadband area, bringing fibre broadband to more businesses and residents. 

“The economy of Coventry, Solihull and Warwickshire has seen considerable change – with the emergence of more knowledge-based businesses and changes to the manufacturing base of the area - which is embracing new technologies and new ways of working. Fibre broadband is key to future growth in these new IT-powered industries.” 

Nadhim Zahawi MP said: “Bringing super-fast broadband is essential for rural communities, and it’s fantastic to see the first fibre optic cabinet switched on in Snitterfield. The Government is rightly investing over £1 billion in broadband infrastructure, and I’m looking forward to seeing the benefits across the whole constituency.” 

Richard Yendall, a local broadband champion, said: “It's wonderful to see Snitterfield get super-fast broadband, which will be of huge benefit to both residents and local businesses. For me personally, high speed broadband will allow me to work from home more and cut down on unnecessary travel." 

Communications Minister, Ed Vaizey, said: “Today’s switching on of the first cabinet in Warwickshire marks the next stage of the remarkable transformation of broadband taking place throughout the county and the rest of the UK. We already do more business online than any other European country and widespread access to super-fast speeds will provide a welcome boost to the Warwickshire economy.” 

The CSW Broadband partnership will ensure around 40,000 premises in the project area have access to super-fast broadband. When combined with private sector investments, 91 cent of the area’s homes and businesses will have access to super-fast broadband by Spring 2016. 
Updates on the roll-out of CSW Broadband are available on the programme website: http://www.cswbroadband.org.uk 

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

About CSW Broadband - http://www.cswbroadband.org.uk 

CSW Broadband is a partnership of eight Local Authorities (Coventry, Solihull, Warwickshire and the Boroughs and Districts of North Warwickshire, Nuneaton and Bedworth, Rugby, Warwick and Stratford on Avon). 

The project office is hosted by Warwickshire County Council and is based in Warwick. The project team can be contacted on 01926 738339 or broadband@warwickshire.gov.uk 

The CSW Superfast Broadband Programme is in addition to, and separate from, Coventry City Council’s ‘Super Connected Cities’ Programme. 
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