n £18.06 million project to transform broadband speeds for thousands more businesses and residents across Bucks and Herts was announced last Friday.
Following a procurement process, Bucks and Herts County Councils have signed a contract with BT which will see fibre broadband becoming available to more than 90 per cent of premises in the two counties by the end of March 2016.
This is a major step forward for the Connected Counties programme, run jointly by the two councils.
The programme will make fibre broadband available to more than 38,500 homes and businesses in Bucks in the next three years, delivering speeds of up to 80Mbps.
It builds on BT’s commercial roll-out which has so far made the technology available to more than 153,000 homes and businesses in the Bucks County Council area.
The project also aims to ensure that everyone in Bucks and Herts has access to a minimum of 2Mbps broadband speeds – fast enough to watch BBC iPlayer.
Bucks County Council leader, Martin Tett, said: “This is a fantastic step forward in our commitment to make the county a great place to do business and to live. Superfast broadband has the potential to transform our economy and our lives as dramatically as the railways did for the Victorians.”
BT is contributing £8.6 million to the project while Bucks and Herts County Councils are contributing £3.7 million and £1.61 million respectively, including funding from the two Local Enterprise Partnerships.
A further £4.15million is coming from the government’s Broadband Delivery UK funds.