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Extra £2.5 million for faster broadband in Worcestershire
AN EXTRA £2.5 million is going into faster broadband across Worcestershire, it has emerged.
Culture Secretary Maria Miller today announced that Worcestershire will get an additional £2.59 million to ensure 95 per cent of the county gets access to superfast fibre broadband by 2017.
The cash is on top of the current £20 million being spent across the county in a deal between Worcestershire County Council and BT, aimed at upgrading services to 90 per cent of properties.
The new Government allocation is part of a £250 million package announced this afternoon to help areas not covered by the existing programme.
It has already been welcomed by politicians in rural parts of the county.
West Worcestershire MP Harriett Baldwin said: "We have seen from the current broadband programme that some rural areas were going to be left out of the upgrade plan.
"I hope that this money will be allocated directly to projects to help our rural communities to enjoy the same speeds as those living in major cities.
"This Government fund is a huge piece of good news for county homes and businesses who were worried they were being passed over because they were too difficult to reach.
"I am assured that the focus of this money is on fixing these areas and getting almost all of the country onto superfast broadband by 2017."
Under the county council deal BT says it will ensure 55,000 properties get superfast speeds in a huge three-year overhaul.
It will especially benefit households in rural parts of Worcestershire where speeds are notoriously slow including Upton, Evesham, Malvern and Droitwich, but also Worcester.
The speed, defined as anything above 24 megabytes per second, is enough to download huge files, watch films or music videos, and flick through web pages instantly.
Work is currently taking place to determine the cable locations.