Whilst there has been a lot of progress, I am acutely aware that there is still much more work that needs to be done to improve broadband speeds in our area. Fast, reliable broadband access is essential for homes and businesses, no matter how rural they are, if we are to ensure that growth in our part of Norfolk does not get left behind.
Earlier this year, I met with the Minister of State for Digital, the Rt Hon Matt Hancock MP, to make the case for further improvements to broadband services in Norfolk and so I was pleased to see the Government’s subsequent commitment of an additional £11 million for such improvements in the county. This will see superfast broadband coverage in Norfolk rise from 87% this year to 95% by 2020.
In the meantime, properties with access to a broadband speed of less than 2Mbps and which are not currently forecast for a fibre upgrade, the Government has established a voucher scheme which aims to cover the set-up costs for the implementation of alternative technologies such as wireless and satellite. Further information on this scheme, and whether you are scheduled for improvements by 2020, can be found by visiting the Better Broadband for Norfolk website here .
Some helpful tips on getting the best out of broadband and mobile provision in our area have also been put together by the Digital Divide Campaign – a campaign I set up with Anglia Farmers to help promote a local plan for Norfolk, Suffolk and Cambridge. These tips can be found here .
Rest assured, I am determined to continue with my efforts to secure superfast broadband coverage for everyone in Mid Norfolk.