BT Agrees £18.6m Buckinghamshire And Hertfordshire BDUK Deal

Steve McCaskill is editor of TechWeekEurope and ChannelBiz. He joined as a reporter in 2011 and covers all areas of IT, with a particular interest in telecommunications, mobile and networking, along with sports technology.

Follow on: Google +

BT wins more BDUK funding in latest rural broadband deal

BT has secured yet more government funding from the BDUK initiative after agreeing an £18.6 million deal to bring fibre to 90 percent of homes and businesses in Buckinghamshire and Hertfordshire by the end of March 2016.

Speeds of up to 80Mbps will be made available to more than 38,500 homes in Buckinghamshire and 14,100 in Hertfordshire, building on BT’s existing commercial rollout in the two counties.

It is also hoped that all premises will be able to access speeds of at least 2Mbps upon completion of the project.

More BDUK deals

St Albans Cathedral“Faster broadband will boost our economy as it makes local businesses much more competitive and it is great for families who need to access multiple devices at the same time,” said Robert Gordon, Leader of Hertfordshire County Council.

His sentiments were echoed by Buckinghamshire County Council leader Martin Tett who hoped the development would benefit the local economy.

“This is a fantastic step forward in our commitment to make the county a great place to do business and to live”, he said. “Superfast broadband has the potential to transform our economy and our lives as dramatically as the railways did for the Victorians.”

Hertfordshire County Council will provide £1.61 million in funding and Buckinghamshire County Council will contribute £3.7 million towards the project, with BDUK adding £4.15 million.

BT will contribute £8.6 million after being chosen by the councils following an “extensive and thorough” procurement process in which the company is the only bidder after its rival Fujitsu withdrew.

BT has so far won all the money available under the scheme, which is currently the subject of a review by the National Audit Office (NAO) to determine whether it provides value for money. A report will be published next month.

What do you know about BT? Find out with our quiz!