Central Suffolk and North Ipswich MP Dr Dan Poulter says BT must ‘behave better’ to deliver superfast broadband to the county.
The Better Broadband for Suffolk programme, a partnership between Suffolk County Council, BT and the Government, aims to create a broadband network “fit for the 21st Century” and was launched in 2013. It hopes to provide superfast connection speeds to 90 per cent of the county by the end of this year, with 95 per cent coverage by the end of 2018.
But in a debate into the rollout of improved speeds earlier this week, the MP expressed his concern of creating a “digital divide” and won the support of Ed Vaizey, Minister for Culture and the Digital Economy, to investigate the role of BT in the scheme.
Dr Poulter said: “I am very pleased to have brought the debate on broadband to Parliament as this is the single most important issue facing homes, farms and businesses in Suffolk. Improving broadband in Suffolk has always been a top priority for me and I will continue to push the Government to give us the support we need to ensure that every home, farm, business, school and shop in Suffolk receives faster broadband.
“BT should be accelerating the roll out of faster broadband, and not acting as a handbrake. I hope BT will have listened to issues I raised in the debate and will work more constructively to support Peter Ingram and the Better Broadband for Suffolk team to roll out superfast broadband to all the homes and businesses in our community.”
A spokesperson for BT said: “BT is committed to making superfast fibre broadband as widely available across Suffolk as quickly as possible.
“It’s a huge task with around 100 engineers and support staff involved, and has already connected 367 green roadside fibre broadband cabinets and laid more than 1,700 kilometres of fibre cable. Across the county, more than 290,000 homes and businesses already have access to fibre broadband as a result of BT’s commercial fibre broadband programme and Better Broadband for Suffolk – and the number is continuing to grow rapidly.”
For more see www.betterbroadbandsuffolk.com