BDUK-funded Digital Scotland announces next phase of superfast broadband rollout
The government-funded rollout of superfast broadband in Scotland is set to reach another 145,000 homes and businesses as part of the second phase of the public-private Digital Scotland initiative.
The £410m partnership, funded by BDUK, the Scottish Government, the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and BT, compromises two separate projects – one covering the Highlands and Islands and the other covering the rest of Scotland.
Since the project started last year, 275,000 properties have been connected, with more than 3,400 kilometres of fibre laid. When combined with commercial rollouts, more than 1.5 million and homes and businesses have access to superfast broadband in the country.
The second phase will reach out into more rural areas of the country, such as Braemar in Aberdeenshire, Portpatrick in Dumfries and Galloway and Voe in Shetland, as well as communities in urban areas underserved by commercial deployments.
“It is great to be celebrating the first year of deployment of the £410m Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband programme, while announcing that more exchanges will be included,” said Sara Budge, programme director for Digital Scotland. “By reaching out to those who would not have been covered through the commercial market – in towns and into some of our most rural areas – we are ensuring that the connections which are made will bring many benefits to the Scottish people at home and in business.”
“With the first fibre broadband services now available to order in Orkney and Shetland it’s great that the roll-out is continuing for more of the islands’ communities,” added Stuart Robertson, HIE director. “Also, over the next six months we will see coverage stretch further into the Badenoch and Strathspey area – in Kingussie we are building four new fibre cabinets which could reach more than 800 local homes and businesses.”
Across the UK as a whole, more than two million premises have been connected to fibre as a direct result of government broadband projects.
Do you know the history of BT? Try our quiz!