Superfast broadband pilot revealed

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Eight Cornish communities will have superfast broadband within less than five months at the start of the £132 million project to make Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly one of the best connected locations in the world.

More than 10,000 businesses and homes in Leedstown, Chiverton Cross area, St Agnes, Portreath, St Day, Devoran, Stenalees and Par are expected to be able to access the service by the end of March.

This pilot scheme will run in advance of the main roll-out programme, which in its early phases will focus mainly on south east Cornwall.

The ambitious partnership project funded by BT and the Convergence Programme, is expected to have delivered superfast fibre broadband to between 80% and 90% of businesses and households in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly by 2014

Carolyn Rule, Cornwall Council cabinet member for economy and regeneration, said: “The project has been making very good progress since it was announced less than two months ago. It shows the power of the public and private sectors working together to help build a bright, strong future for us all.

“The businesses and people of Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly have good reason to be very optimistic about the years ahead.”

Nigel Ashcroft, director of next generation broadband for Cornwall Development Company, said: “This is an incredibly innovative and pioneering project never before done on this scale. A pilot scheme in these eight locations will provide valuable feedback at an early stage as we prepare for the early phases of the roll-out programme primarily in the south east of the county.

“A huge amount of engineering work is required for this complex project, but our surveys have shown that these communities can be upgraded relatively quickly.

“It means that early next year the first Cornish customers will be experiencing the huge benefits offered by superfast broadband and we will be obtaining useful information, which will assist the project’s progress elsewhere.”

Jon Reynolds, BT South West regional director, added: “It is excellent news that the first Cornish businesses and homes will have access to superfast broadband at such an early stage. This is a transformational project, which will boost the productivity of local businesses and help to attract a more diverse range of high-growth companies to the area. It will play a major role in creating a more prosperous Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.”

Local residents can find out more about the project by clicking here.

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