On Monday 23rd August, Dr Neil Hudson MP for Penrith and The Border welcomed Matt Warman MP, the Minister for Digital Infrastructure to near Pendragon Castle, south of Kirkby Stephen, in Penrith and The Border to discuss issues with broadband in rural areas of the constituency and the future of Project Gigabit. Dr Hudson and Mr Warman met with a team and volunteers from B4RN (Broadband for the Rural North) to see them installing full fibre broadband in the area.
Up to 510,000 homes and businesses in Cumbria, Northumberland, Cambridgeshire, Cornwall, Dorset, Durham, Essex , South Tyneside and Tees Valley will be the first to benefit as part of Project Gigabit. The available speeds of Project Gigabit will increase to more than 1,000 megabits or one gigabit per second. It means families no longer having to battle over bandwidth and will give people in rural areas the freedom to live and work more flexibly.
Dr Neil Hudson MP said
“It was great to welcome Matt Warman MP to Cumbria to discuss the future of rural broadband and the Project Gigabit initiative. I am really pleased he has come to visit Penrith and The Border to see the struggles that rural society faces regarding connectivity and the community efforts going into improving that connectivity. I am passionate that we need to improve connectivity in our area and I have been raising this repeatedly with Government including the Prime Minister. The pandemic has highlighted the importance of reliable broadband for our society such as young people needing to access online learning and farmers being able to process payments online. I look forward to working with Matt and the Government to improve broadband and mobile coverage in Penrith and The Border.”
Matt Warman MP, Minister for Digital Infrastructure said:
“It was great to join Neil Hudson MP in Penrith and The Border to see the excellent work by B4RN to improve local connectivity for residents. Neil has been banging the drum hard at Westminster for better connectivity for his area and I am happy to say that Government is listening to his calls and Cumbria is very much a priority for our fibre broadband rollout programme and the Shared Rural Network.”