We store cookies on your device to make sure we give you the best experience on this website. I'm fine with this - Turn cookies off
Switch to an accessible version of this website which is easier to read. (requires cookies)

Rural Areas Need Decent Broadband - Farron

January 26, 2016 2:47 PM

A new report into broadband access shows the "dire" level of broadband availability in rural areas and the need for urgent action, according to Westmorland and Lonsdale MP Tim Farron.

The British Infrastructure Group of MPs released its first report 'Broadbad' on Satruday, which examines broadband coverage across the country.

The report shows that Westmorland and Lonsdale has an average download speed of just 14.7Mbps, which puts it at 628 out of 650 constituencies when ranked in terms of average speeds. Over 55% of broadband connections in the constituency are under 10 Mbps.

Ofcom, the regulatory body responsible for the telecoms sector, believe that a download speed of at least 10Mbit/s is the minimum necessary for what they describe as an acceptable user experience. According to the report, "48% of rural connections do not meet this minimum speed leaving ordinary people and businesses lagging behind the rest of the country." The report concludes that "poor internet connections are costing the UK economy up to £11 billion per year."

Tim said: "This report confirms what local people already know - broadband access in our area is simply not good enough. It is critical both for residents and businesses that access to decent broadband is extended to rural areas.

"Unfortunately, the scale of the problem is not matched by the scale of the government's ambition. In urban areas the government is busy improving superfast and ultrafast broadband access, yet in rural areas there has only been a commitment to providing speeds of 10Mbps by 2020. Whilst that would be a welcome improvement on our current service, the reality is that in the modern day that is simply not enough. The government must support the rural economy by providing decent broadband access to all."