£600,000 is to be invested by councils in a super-fast broadband trial as part of a Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) pilot announced last year. Gloucestershire County Council and Herefordshire County Council will each invest £300,000 to help get the scheme going which is expected to see further investment of up to £12 million split between government and commercial broadband providers.
Parts of Herefordshire, 80% of the Forest of Dean, parts of Gloucester and Tewkesbury will be included in this broadband trial which could be extended across all of rural Gloucestershire, ensuring that those within the final-third are reached. Further funding from the EU is being sought to help with funding of this roll out across the county.
"Accessible fast broadband is seen as an increasingly important element of infrastructure for both business and the wider community.
Indeed, many experts say next generation broadband will be a key contribution to local business success, both to support existing firms and help attract new enterprises as well as giving a general boost to local economies.
We set up the Recession Fund specifically to help projects like this and in these difficult times, I believe it is all the more important to focus on creating a stronger, more secure economy in Gloucestershire.”Councillor Chas Fellows, Cabinet member for economy and environment
Further details about the trial including what kind of service customers will receive and technologies will be used are yet to be released.