Arbroath to benefit from £2.5bn broadband boost

ARBROATH will soon move into the fast lane on the information superhighway when proposed broadband upgrades are made next year.

On Monday it was announced that the BT Openreach broadband upgrade programme will see £2.5 billion spent on improving speed and reliability of broadband internet connections, and will all but eliminate slow spots and in some cases double connection speed.

Work is expected to begin in Spring 2012 and will see around 11,000 homes and businesses in the town upgraded.

Using Fibre to the cabinet (FTTC) technology BT Openreach customers, depending on equipment used and line length, can experience speeds of up to 40Mbps.

With fibre to the premises (FTTP) technology, again depending on circumstances, speeds of up to 100Mbps can be achieved, and BT Openreach has announced that for FTTC they aim to double connections speed, while FTTP is expected to triple next year.

The faster speeds will be a huge boost to local companies which will be able to switch from running costly physical servers to more affordable ‘cloud-based’ servers, creating huge savings.

Olivia Garfield, chief executive of Openreach, said: “We continue to make tremendous strides with our fibre programme. Super-fast broadband is already within reach of more than six million premises today and we are on track to pass 10 million premises next year. “Our ambitions do not stop there. We will make fibre available to two thirds of UK premises by the end of 2014 and we want to go even further.

“It is important that as many premises as possible have access to fibre and so we will bid for the BDUK funds that are available.

“Our experience in deploying fibre networks at scale and the fact that our open, wholesale network allows competition to thrive in an area makes Openreach an ideal partner for these local/regional broadband initiatives.”

Angus MP Mike Weir welcomed the announcement, he said: “It is great to see Arbroath is now going to be part of the super-fast broadband network.

“This is undoubtedly great news for local businesses offering them greater internet opportunities than ever before. Super fast broadband is essential for businesses in the modern age. This is potentially a significant boost for local business.

“Home users too should see a boost in the services they can receive and it is welcome news following a similar earlier announcement for Montrose.”

Alan Mitchell, chief executive of Dundee and Angus Chamber of Commerce, added: “Competitive and successful businesses need effective connectivity, whether it is physical or electronic, so this is great news for businesses in Arbroath because it will allow them to offer a better service to their customers and gives them the opportunity to reach into new markets at home and abroad.”