- As part of a deal between 02, Vodafone and Three, 222 mobile masts will be built across the UK to boost mobile coverage.
- Eight sites are provisionally ear-marked for Penrith and The Border
The deal between the three operators will help deliver the first stage of the government’s £1bn Shared Rural Network. Nothing has yet been confirmed and the sites are subject to planning approval.
If the 8 sites and applications are given the necessary go ahead, it could lead to significant improvements in mobile coverage in Penrith and The Border.
Commenting on these developments Dr Hudson said:
“For too many of my constituents, poor mobile coverage and download speeds have become a fact of daily life. I am pleased that the Government’s Shared Rural Network is beginning to roll out and that this is planned to reach Penrith and The Border. Whilst this is good news, these improvements are not set in stone. That is why, as part of my ‘Better Connectivity’ campaign, I will continue to press the case with Government for better provision.
I recently met with the Minister for Digital Infrastructure, Matt Warman, to discuss the broader issue of poor digital connectivity and he was receptive and encouraging. I have regular meetings with mobile operators to see how their offer to my constituents can be improved and I am in regular contact with Connecting Cumbria (a partnership between Cumbria County Council and BT) to see how we might get superfast broadband to as many properties as possible.
The Government been making important strides recently; alongside the Shared Rural Network, £5bn has been committed to the rollout of gigabit broadband in rural areas, the Universal Service Obligation (sets a minimum requirement for download speeds) has been introduced and 99% of new build homes will have built-in gigabit broadband. These are steps in the right direction but I want the Government to go further. I am determined to keep this issue high on the Government’s agenda to ensure that Penrith and The Border isn’t left behind and can share in the prosperity that good mobile and broadband coverage can bring.”