Hereford & Worcester

Superfast broadband for Worcestershire

Worcestershire council has promised £8.5m towards providing superfast broadband across the county.

The county council's cabinet has made a commitment to faster broadband for most homes and businesses by 2015.

The objectives, scope and approach of the Local Broadband Plan (LBP) for Worcestershire were also agreed.

Further funding is to come from the government's Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK), the Green Infrastructure fund and sustainable transport funding.

The council's aim is for 90% of businesses and homes in Worcestershire to have access to Superfast Broadband by 2015.

Crucial for economy

The LBP plan will be submitted to BDUK in December and, if approved, the council will be able to draw on £3.3m of funding in 2012.

The council hopes for a contribution of £400,000 from the Green Infrastructure Fund and £300,000 of sustainable transport funding as well as investment from the private sector.

Councillor Simon Geraghty, the cabinet member for economy and infrastructure, said connectivity was "absolutely vital for businesses to flourish and to take place internationally".

He said superfast broadband was crucial for Worcestershire's future economy.

"Reliable and faster broadband provision will improve the quality of life for all our residents as well as importantly facilitating growth for our economy," he said.

The cabinet will receive a progress report in April 2012.

BDUK is part of the government's Department for Culture, Media and Sport and is pledged to increase access to broadband for households, businesses and communities across the UK.

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