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09 December 2013

Superfast broadband extended to more parts of Carlisle

More households and businesses in Carlisle can now enjoy the benefits of superfast broadband.

The Connecting Cumbria project has made high-speed fibre broadband available to further locations across the city and surrounding areas, including Linstock and Rickerby.

More than 1,300 Carlisle properties have been switched on to fibre broadband as part of Connecting Cumbria, and partners Cumbria County Council and BT have confirmed that 11 more street-side cabinets in the city will be connected over the coming months, providing access for an additional 500 properties.

To mark the expansion of the service in Carlisle, members of the Connecting Cumbria project team will be in the city centre outside House of Fraserthis external link will open in a new window on Wednesday 11 December, from 10am-3pm, to advise people about the benefits and availability of superfast broadband.

The new green cabinets are part of a wave of upgraded telecommunications infrastructure being rolled out across Cumbria between now and the end of 2015. On completion, some 93 per cent of Cumbrian properties will have access to faster fibre broadband, with the remaining properties unable to benefit from fibre having access to at least 2Mbps - making Cumbria one of the best connected places in Europe and breaking down Britain's digital divide between rural and urban areas.

Across the county, fibre broadband is now available in Dalton, Lazonby, Maryport, Penrith, Rockcliffe, Ulverston, Walney, Whitehaven and Workington.

In addition, Bardsea, Barrow and Cockermouth are next in line to be connected shortly, with Allonby, Brampton, Harrington, Hayton, Southwaite and Wetheral planned for early 2014.

Councillor David Southward, Cumbria County Council Cabinet member for economic development, said: "It's great news that increasing numbers of Cumbrian homes and businesses are benefiting from superfast broadband. The roll-out is really gathering pace with a series of new cabinets going live right across the county over the coming months, thanks to the significant investment being made through the Connecting Cumbria project."

Paul Cretney, BT's project manager for Connecting Cumbria, said: “Whether people are using the internet to do their Christmas shopping or stay in touch with loved ones over the festive period, or local businesses contacting their customers and suppliers at this busy time of the year and in the future, everything is made easier, better and faster using fibre broadband.”

Households and businesses should be aware that upgrades to superfast broadband do not happen automatically and customers should contact their internet service provider to request the service. A choice of service providers is available, thereby ensuring competitive pricing, so customers are advised to shop around.

To find out about the latest areas to be switched on to superfast broadband, follow us on Twitter @Connect_Cumbria

Connecting Cumbria is in addition to BT’s commercial rollout which will bring faster fibre broadband within reach of 92,000 homes and businesses across Cumbria by the end of Spring 2014 as part of its £2.5 billion investment programme.

For more information, please contact Emma Tennant at the BT regional press office on 0800 085 0660 or email: emma.tennant@bt.com

The Connecting Cumbria Project will build upon BT and other providers’ existing commercial investment to ensure at least 93% of Cumbrian homes and businesses can access fibre broadband by the end of 2015, with the aspiration that all Cumbrian properties have speeds of at least 2Mbps.This includes working with some of Cumbria’s remotest communities to extend the fibre network through innovative community projects in the hardest to reach areas.
BT’s network will be open to all communications providers on an equal wholesale basis and so Cumbria consumers and businesses will benefit from a highly competitive market, in turn bringing greater choice and affordable prices.

About ERDF
The Department for Communities and Local Government is the managing authority for the European Regional Development Fund Programme, which is one of the funds established by the European Commission to help local areas stimulate their economic development by investing in projects which will support local businesses and create jobs. For more information visit https://www.gov.uk/erdf-programmes-progress-and-achievements

About BDUK
Superfast Britain is a Government programme of investment in broadband and communication infrastructure across the UK. Run by the Department of Culture, Media and Sport, this investment helps businesses to grow, creates jobs and will make Britain more competitive in the global race. The portfolio is comprised of three elements:
£780m to extend superfast broadband to 95% of the UK by 2017
£150m to provide high speed broadband to businesses in 22 cities
£150m to improve quality and coverage of mobile phone and basic data network services
Administered on behalf of Government by Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK), Superfast Britain is transforming Britain by promoting growth, enabling skills and learning, and improving quality of life.
For further information: https://www.gov.uk/broadband-delivery-uk

About BT
BT is one of the world’s leading providers of communications services and solutions, serving customers in more than 170 countries. Its principal activities include the provision of networked IT services globally; local, national and international telecommunications services to its customers for use at home, at work and on the move; broadband, TV and internet products and services; and converged fixed/mobile products and services. BT consists principally of four lines of business: BT Global Services, BT Retail, BT Wholesale and Openreach.

For the year ended 31 March 2013, BT Group’s reported revenue was £18,103m with reported profit before taxation of £2,315m.

British Telecommunications plc (BT) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of BT Group plc and encompasses virtually all businesses and assets of the BT Group. BT Group plc is listed on stock exchanges in London and New York.

For more information, visit www.btplc.comthis external link will open in a new window

This is an archived copy of a news release originally published on www.cumbria.gov.uk