Suffolk: Broadband speed boost after council agrees BT deal

EVERY household and business premise in Suffolk will be guaranteed broadband speeds of at least two megabits per second (Mbps) by 2015, and 85% will be able to access superfast coverage, it has been revealed today.

Suffolk County Council has announced that it plans to work with BT to implement the county’s Better Broadband for Suffolk programme.

It means that within just three years, nine out of 10 Suffolk properties will be connected to fibre-based broadband and will be able to get speed increases of at least 10Mbps.

By the end of next year, the entire Waveney Local Enterprise Zone area will have access to superfast speeds (24Mbps or more).

Mark Bee, Suffolk County Council’s leader and chair of the Better Broadband for Suffolk programme broad, said: “When we launched the Better Broadband for Suffolk campaign, we wanted to ensure that everyone who lives and works in our county benefits. Today I’m proud to say that we will deliver exactly that.

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“Improving access to broadband is going to help Suffolk’s economy grow by as much as 20% and create up to 5000 new jobs. There’s a digital divide between Suffolk and the rest of the country but an even more acute disparity between urban and rural Suffolk. The Better Broadband programme is going to close those gaps, boost school attainment and help the public sector to deliver services more efficiently and cheaply.”

A contract between Suffolk County Council and BT is expected to be finalised by mid-October 2012. The contract is expected to be formally awarded by the end of October. The first premises to benefit from the programme will do so by the end of 2012 – with the full programme being completed by June 2015.

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