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Fund now open for superfast broadband trials in remote areas

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A £10 million fund has now opened to suppliers who come forward with innovative ideas to help superfast broadband reach Britain’s most remote communities, culture secretary Maria Miller has announced.

The government’s ambitious broadband programme is already on track to deliver superfast speeds to 95 per cent of the UK by 2017, so now the focus is shifting to the hardest to reach and most remote premises in Britain.

The £10 million fund will enable a range of pilot projects to be undertaken up and down the country, as the Government seeks the most effective way to ensure that the most remote areas are included in the broadband transformation taking place across Britain.

Suppliers can submit bids in three different categories – technology, operating models and financial

Culture secretary Maria Miller said:

“Government’s rollout of superfast broadband is already reaching more than 10,000 homes every week but now we need to focus on the hardest to reach communities.

“These pilots will be instrumental in helping us understand how to overcome the challenges of reaching the most remote areas of the UK, and I hope to see a wide range of suppliers coming forward with innovative proposals.”

Chief secretary to the Treasury, Danny Alexander said:

“I am delighted that the rollout of superfast broadband across the UK is continuing apace.

“Government investment in hard to reach areas of the UK will  deliver the benefits of a fast and reliable digital communications infrastructure to rural communities, helping to unlock local growth.”

Rural Affairs minister, Dan Rogerson said:

“The aim of this fund is to help people living in very remote areas secure the benefits of superfast broadband.

“Fast and reliable broadband coverage is crucial in building a stronger economy and fairer society for farmers and all rural businesses to be able to compete and grow.”

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