UK cities divide up fast broadband cash

Houses of Parliament Londoners should benefit from promised "super-fast" download speeds

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The government has announced how it will share the money promised to 10 UK cities to allow them to create superfast broadband networks.

London gets the largest share of the £114m pot with £25m, followed by Leeds and Bradford, which will divide £14.4m.

The money will be used to build city-wide networks, offering homes and businesses speeds of up to 100Mbps (megabits per second).

The government wants to make the UK the fastest place in Europe by 2015.

A further £50m is to be awarded to ten smaller cities.


  • London - £25m
  • Leeds and Bradford - £14.4m
  • Belfast - £13.7m
  • Manchester - £12m
  • Bristol - £11.3m
  • Cardiff - £11m
  • Edinburgh - £10.7m
  • Birmingham - £10m
  • Newcastle - £6m
Digital leaders

New culture secretary Maria Miller promised last week to cut the red tape associated with broadband rollouts.

She hopes that the city networks can be built soon.

"These 10 cities have produced ambitious and comprehensive plans, which will turn them into digital leaders, and give their local economies a real boost," she said.

The new investment will help put these cities at the centre of the digital stage, competing for jobs and investment with the best in the world," she added.

However, the Labour Party accused the minister of spin.

"This government is disguising its failure to roll out universal broadband by making yet another re-announcement about the superconnected cities programme," said the Shadow Minister for Media and Telecoms, Helen Goodman.

"It is also unlikely that the government will meet its target of rolling out super-fast broadband to 90% of premises by 2015."

Alongside the government money, each city is expected to invest some of its own funds in the broadband projects.

The 10 cities' plans are expected to bring superfast broadband access (offering speeds between 80 and 100 megabits per second) to around an extra 230,000 residential and 55,000 business premises as well as high speed wireless to even more.

All the networks are due to be completed by 2015.


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  • rate this

    Comment number 175.

    In the sticks where I live it's been proven that a pigeon with a memory stick taped to its leg is a faster way to move data around than broadbanned.

    BT is my ONLY option and they don't care about how crappy their service is to me; they charge me the same as any other customer and there's nowt I can do about it.

    Fortunately I can walk the dog in a nice setting

  • rate this

    Comment number 174.

    Why do cities need more money for broadband? Surely rural areas should be getting the £114m and the cities get the £50m. Not the other way around. I live in a very rural area with broadband speeds of about 2Mbps. Which for around there is considered fast. I've just moved to uni in cardiff and have speeds of about 30Mbps. And it's getting £11m for internet?


  • rate this

    Comment number 173.

    Why should tax payers fork out for hi speed broadband, take awy the licences from those operators that don't deliver, isn't that what privatisation was supposed to be about?

  • rate this

    Comment number 172.

    Throw money in the direction of those places that don't already have above average broadband. Why bother upgrading London again and again, when rural areas (such as the one I live in currently) are still sitting well below the national average. I won't be getting upgraded for 11 months. Its a joke.

  • rate this

    Comment number 171.

    I live in rural Oxfordshire and we have 4 ecomerce websites. Braod bad speeds are a joke out here.

    Spend the money where it is needed, super fast cheap broadband for all will help start rural bussinesses all over the country.

  • rate this

    Comment number 170.

    Quadruple that £114m, move the deadline up to 2013, scrap that ridiculous digital economy bill and legalise file sharing. Then we're talking.

  • rate this

    Comment number 169.

    About time! My broadband provider says I should get 5 mbps, but typically my speed is more like 5-10 kpbs! I know this may not be completely their fault, but surely living only 10 miles out of central London I can expect better connectivity than this?!

  • rate this

    Comment number 168.

    Yet another huge wad of (borrowed) Tax-payers money (not "government money") being spent to benefit businesses, who, in turn will charge Tax-payers to use it.

  • rate this

    Comment number 167.

    While good & the best if not only sensible infrastructure spending by government I question the idea it is the cities that need it. There it is easy for the commercial providers to justify doing it themselves. For a truly modern cyber system it requires government sort out the remoter areas of the land so they get the same service. Rather like the universal post price system up and down the land.

  • rate this

    Comment number 166.

    @#125 - Your connection is still < 1Mbps regardless of that in your central office.

  • rate this

    Comment number 165.

    164. catwoman: Less than 1 Mbps (not MB) is measured in Kbps.
    I live in a village which is more than 6km from the exchange and reliably get between 1.5 and 2 Mbps. I will not benefit when the exchange goes to FTTC next year as it is extremely unlikely that the village cabinets would be included, given the distance. I am not tempted to move into town as it is nice and quiet here by the sea.

  • rate this

    Comment number 164.

    I'm not sure where you live "thesearejustyears" but my broadband speed is diabolical. I live halfway between Bradford and Halifax, West Yorks (hardly the back of beyond!) and my speed is less than half a MBpS ..... I can't even remember what less than a MB is called! I welcome Bradford finally receiving some cash to improve the broadband speeds and encourage new business to the area.

  • rate this

    Comment number 163.

    While any new money for Broadband infrastructure is welcome - it's sad that politicians have got their priorities so badly wrong:

    In Edinburgh, they've just spent £1,000 million on a tram system which harks back to the 19th Century - that certainly puts £10m for high speed broadband infrastructure suitable for the 21st century into perspective!

  • rate this

    Comment number 162.

    4 Hours ago

    Investment in broadband means that taxpayers will actually benefit from their own cash, for once."

    Well, say rather that some taxpayers will, provided they live in the right places. But surely the service providers should be providing the means to provide the service - not the taxpayer.

  • Comment number 161.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • rate this

    Comment number 160.

    Supplying broadband is a commercial activity - why is taxpayers' money being used to instal commercial networks? Should not these so-called businesses, operating in the much-vaunted "free market", be investing their mega profits back into their own businesses?

    Is the government going to invest in assets for all businesses, or just the selected lucky few party donors (whoops, what a giveaway!)?

  • rate this

    Comment number 159.


    Are you sure you are on a 54mbps line, or is your wireless network 54mbps?

  • rate this

    Comment number 158.

    What exactly is the point of 100mbps? I can stream, download, upload, wiz through websites my speed is 54Mbps! This is a waste of cash, a political move and nothing more. It is the more remote areas that need a decent broadband connection.

  • rate this

    Comment number 157.

    The big cities already have fast enough broadband. What about the likes of me who can't even get 1.5mbps at home? (Forget it on a Friday night - it's like the days of 56k modems again). Or at my office (only a few miles from a city) where I can only get 2mbps?

  • rate this

    Comment number 156.

    You can keep your 100mbps, here in Wales we are getting much faster internet.

    Mind you, with Cardiff getting this money for 100mbps... I demand the Welsh Government does not include the capital in the national rollout deal recently signed with BT. This would mean alot more money for the rest of the nation and enabling a faster rollout.


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