Two million rural homes and businesses to benefit in UK's £5 billion broadband upgrade

Millions of people in rural England will get access to the fastest broadband speeds on the market as part of a £5 billion plan to level up internet access across the UK. The government’s Project Gigabit fund to upgrade digital infrastructure in hard-to-reach areas will accelerate the country’s recovery from COVID-19, fire up high-growth sectors such as tech and the creative industries, put an end to families battling for bandwidth, and bring the speed and reliability people need to start and run businesses. Plan details published today reveal up to 1,850,000 additional premises across 26 English counties will get access to gigabit speed internet of 1,000 megabits per second, enough to download a HD movie in less than 30 seconds and lay the foundations for next-generation tech such as 8K-quality video streaming. It brings the current total number of premises in scope for government-funded coverage to 2.2 million, with more still to be announced across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. The UK is also on track for the fastest rollout in Europe in 2021 and for 60 per cent of all households to have access to gigabit speeds by the end of the year. The government aims to achieve at least 85 per cent gigabit-capable UK coverage by 2025, and ministers are ready to go as fast as broadband companies can manage.

Two million rural homes and businesses to benefit in £5 billion broadband upgrade