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4G consultation offers us the chance to roll out mobile broadband in Cumbria

January 12, 2012 2:50 PM

 (Tim broadad photo1)South Lakes MP Tim Farron has welcomed the news that media regulator Ofcom has come forward today with a number of new proposals for making 4G mobile accessible to people in Cumbria.

Following earlier consultations, Ofcom have today announced a second consultation on the auction of the 800MHz and 2.6GHz spectrum for use by the next generation of 4G superfast Mobile Broadband. Crucially, Ofcom want to extend coverage from 95% to 98% of the UK population and require operators to include current mobile 'not spots' in their roll-out plans.

Danny Alexander, the Liberal Democrats Chief Secretary to the Treasury, previously announced a pot of funds to deal with internet and mobile 'not-spots'. A major slice of this £150m is likely to be spent on building new mobile infrastructure in rural areas of theUKwhere there is little or no commercial incentive for operators to do so.

Earlier this week Tim wrote to Jeremy Hunt the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, and Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) telling them thatCumbriashould be the first rural area to be a 4G pilot.

Commenting Tim said: "4G is the future of mobile broadband and we must get the government to agree that Cumbria is right at the forefront of this. This consultation is really welcome. I will continue to make the strong case to Ofcom and the government that Cumbria needs a super-fast broadband network and improved mobile coverage."