Saturday, 26 December 2015

Progress on Northumberland broadband - more money, new villages, bigger rollout, better speeds -we are getting there!

Broadband is one of my biggest campaigns. I accept that we need to do more and that there are still not spots and problem areas but slowly but surely we are genuinely getting there.

By the end of September, the government’s Superfast Broadband Programme had provided coverage to over 3.3 million homes and businesses. In Northumberland alone, the programme has allocated £10.6 million of government funding to extend new, faster online connectivity across the region.

What does this mean for the Hexham constituency? In total 15,303 premises had been covered by the scheme by the end of September this year. On top of this, a further 1,327 premises are due to be covered by the end of 2016. This is excellent news for residents, business, and especially those that work from home for whom online connectivity is so vital.

Beyond this though, the government wants to go even further. Last month the Prime Minister announced an intention to implement a new broadband Universal Service Obligation, with an ambition to set this at a speed of 10 Mbps. This will give all consumers with speeds below the specified level the right to request an upgrade from a designated provider, no matter where they live. This will be subject to a consultation next year, but demonstrates the level of ambition this government has for a fully connected, superfast UK.

If you have specific complaints please, as always, get in touch.


  1. Well the high speed broadband is certainly usable in Bellingham. I'm now getting nearly 80Mnps downloads - but at cost. It is particularly concerning that some of the key players for whatever reason have NOT taken this up. SKY for example do not offer fibre broadband here. Is this because of restrictive practices by BT?

  2. I'm afraid it does nothing for us. As a small community of 9 families at Well House, we get about half a gig download speed. They are also telling us they have no intention of improving on that as they can't find where we are wired up to! Not very inspiring and not hopeful at all. We are awaiting decisions on a satellite voucher which is their latest offer; very expensive but if it gives a better service then bye bye BT.