Whinhill pupils get a lesson with fibre broadband
Around 1,000 homes and businesses in Greenock are now able to connect to high-speed fibre broadband thanks to the £410m Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband programme.
The Digital Scotland team unveiled one of the new fibre street cabinets that will serve part of the town. They were joined by senior pupils from Whinhill Primary School and Inverclyde Council Depute Leader, Councillor Jim Clocherty, who were all excited to discover what goes on inside the green street cabinets.
The latest premises are among more than 710,000 homes and businesses across Scotland which are now able to access fibre broadband through the £410 million Digital Scotland rollout.
To access the latest fibre broadband technology, local people need to sign up with an internet service provider, as upgrades are not automatic.
Other local areas to benefit from the Digital Scotland rollout, led by the Scottish Government, include Gourock, Inverkip, Kilmacolm, Port Glasgow, Quarrier’s Village and Wemyss Bay. More local coverage will follow as engineers from Openreach, BT’s local network business, continue work on the ground.
Adam Milligan, a P7 pupil from Whinhill Primary School said: “Usually I use the internet for social media to interact with my friends. Also, I'm a big gamer so it's really important to have a strong, quick connection so that the games will run smoothly and my messages will send. During a team game, a fast connection is important so you can keep pace with your friends who are gaming on the internet with you.”
Head Teacher at Whinhill Primary School, Elizabeth Ruddy, added: “It was fantastic to have the Digital Scotland team visit the school and involve some of the pupils in helping launch the latest fibre broadband in the town. It was great opportunity for pupils to see the amount of hard engineering work that’s involved in connecting up communities to fibre broadband. As well as this, it also showed them how beneficial it would be when it comes to their school work and various other aspects of their home life.”
Councillor Jim Clocherty said: “It's good to see that Digital Scotland is reaching more and more communities throughout Scotland - giving an increasing number of homes and businesses the opportunity to connect to high-speed broadband. We are determined to make sure everyone in Inverclyde has access to digital services and the skills and confidence to go online and use them, even from a young age.”
Fibre broadband offers fast and reliable broadband connections at speeds of up to 80Mbps* and there are many suppliers in the marketplace to choose from. Whether you own a business, work from home or want to keep in touch with friends and family, fibre broadband enables multiple users to connect to the internet at high speeds and get better, faster access to online services.
Sara Budge, Programme Director for Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband, said: “It’s fantastic news that the programme has been able to launch more fibre broadband to benefit residents and businesses in and around Greenock.
“I would like to thank the senior pupils of Whinhill Primary School and Councillor Jim Clocherty for joining us this week to unveil the fibre street cabinet and I am glad to see that it has been able to benefit the local community.”
BT is investing £126 million in the Digital Scotland rollout.
Robert Thorburn, BT Scotland’s Fibre Broadband Director, concluded: “Thousands of residents across Inverclyde can now connect to their best ever broadband speeds when they sign up with a service provider, and we’d encourage local people to check out their options.
“It’s a highly competitive market, so people could potentially be surfing at much higher speeds at a similar cost to their current service. Once you’ve made the switch to super-fast, we’re confident you’ll never look back.”
People can check the interactive map on the Digital Scotland website (http://www.scotlandsuperfast.com/where-when/) 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.
The Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband programme aims to provide fibre broadband infrastructure to parts of Scotland not included in commercial providers’ investment plans. Combined with current commercial roll-out plans, the programme will deliver access to fibre broadband to around 95% of premises by the end of the current contract.
Funding partners include the Scottish Government, Highlands and Islands Enterprise, BT, the UK Government through Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK), local authorities and the European Regional Development Fund.