BT Agrees £40m Kent Broadband Partnership

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.

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BT strikes deal to bring superfast broadband to 95 percent of county with the help of BDUK funds

BT has signed a deal with Kent County Council (KCC) to bring superfast broadband to 91 percent of all properties in Kent by 2015, partly funded by the Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) initiative.

The government will provide £9.87 million towards the rollout, with KCC stumping up £10 million and BT supplying £19.6 million.

KCC has called it “one of the biggest infrastructure projects in Kent’s history” and says that the improvements could deliver £1.5 billion to the county’s economy each year.

Kent Broadband funds

Maidstone Week Street

Every property in the project area will have access to download speeds of at least 2mbps, with 95 percent having access to higher-speed broadband and 91 percent receiving superfast speeds of 24Mbps and above.

“This is great news for Kent and marks the start of a particularly large-scale, landmark infrastructure project for Kent, which is about making sure that no one misses out on broadband,” said Roger Gough, KCC Cabinet member for business strategy, performance and health reform. “Just as the thousands of miles of rail and roads are essential in bringing the county together, this is an essential network for Kent. I am looking forward to seeing how, by working with BT, we can keep the county connected and competitive for the future.”

Gough was keen to heap praise on the thousands who signed up to the ‘Make Kent Quicker’ campaign which invited people to sign up and say what they wanted from their broadband.

“I would like to thank everyone who got involved in the ‘Make Kent Quicker’ campaign, which was crucial in showing that the county wanted the improvements that are now on their way,” he said.

BT has won all of the BDUK funding available so far and is likely to win all of the remaining money up for grabs after Fujitsu withdrew from the procurement process last week. It has agreed deals with a number of county councils across the UK, including another one announced today with Northamptonshire County Council.

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