A residents' co-operative in Scotland is bidding to deploy fibre-broadband to the Angus glens to avoid them being left off the broadband fast lane when towns and cities in Scotland are upgraded. Around 2,500 home and businesses in the area have been surveyed ahead of a specially commissioned report which will outline details to locals. They are looking to fibre as a future-proof solution which should support their needs for 20 to 30 years, however this does mean the initial cost of installing the service is substantial as the properties to be covered are in an area of around 500 square miles.
"Current broadband access in the glens is rather patchy. Those close to telephone exchanges may get a connection meeting the minimum 2Mbps broadband set by the Digital Britain Report. Others further from the exchange are lucky to receive even a very basic 0.5Mbps service and some are only able to get a dial-up connection.
The Scottish Government's Broadband Reach project has made some improvements. However, as this is delivered by satellite it is less reliable than a fixed-line connection. In order to pursue setting up a fibre broadband network the group formed Angus Broadband Co-operative Limited as a community owned co-op.
This means that ownership and control are retained within the local community and all profits will be reinvested in the project or paid to members as a dividend. All members running the co-op at present are unpaid volunteers."Geoff Hobson, (Director and Secretary) Angus Broadband Co-operative Ltd.
Some grant funding has already been obtained from local councils to help with the proposal which should bring 100meg broadband to every property in the areas of Kirriemuir Landward West, Kirriemuir Landward East and Inveresk Community Councils. Some meetings are to be held next week where local residents can drop in and find out more information. Further details are available on the Angus Broadband website.