News story

Government sets out high speed broadband plans

Culture, Media and Sport Secretary Jeremy Hunt, has outlined the government's plans for a high speed broadband network for the UK

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

The plans will see a ‘digital hub’ in every community in the country, as part of an £830 million strategy to make sure the UK has the best broadband network in Europe by 2015.

Mr Hunt said that the superfast network would be the foundation for a new economic dynamism, creating hundreds of thousands of jobs and adding billions to the UK’s GDP.

He said:

…It is not just about the economy, around the world there are countless examples of superfast broadband helping to build a fairer and more prosperous society, and to transform the relationship between Government and citizens. And shifting government services online will save billions of pounds of taxpayers’ money.

The hubs will act as central digital points in each community, with high speed connections to the nearest exchange and communities working with local providers to extend networks to individual homes.

The plans also include:

  • cutting the costs of and access to infrastructure and increasing shared access by working with house builders to make new homes broadband ready, and cutting the costs of laying cable by clarifying the rules on streetworks
  • awarding spectrum for mobile services
  • investing £50 million in a second wave of test projects, on top of the four rural pilots we are currently running

Speaking at a reception for people involved in the Race Online campaign earlier this year, the Prime Minister spoke of the importance of avoiding a new gulf between information rich and information poor, between the connected and the unconnected.

He added:

I want to give this all the support I can… to make Britain the most connected, the most wired up, the most digitally-advanced country there can be.

Read more: Next phase of superfast broadband (DCMS website)

Read more: PM backs Race Online 2010 campaign

Read more: Queen’s Speech - High speed broadband connections

Published 6 December 2010