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Yorkshire Dales gets superfast broadband

It's hoped the broadband will help local businesses become more competitive Credit: PA

A superfast broadband service will be launched in the Yorkshire Dales later today. The area was part of the one percent of the country without access to the high speed technology. It's hoped the new service will allow local businesses to become more competitive.

The arrival of Superfast Broadband will be a transformational game-changer for the remoter communities we have here in the Upper Dales, as it will level the playing field for our deeply rural communities, and allow us to compete with the more populated areas of the country - the towns and the cities. I am sure its availability will play a key role in arresting the outflow of young people that has become a very worrying trend recently - they understandably are voting with their feet to chase higher quality career and educational opportunities beyond the Upper Dales, the very sort that use Superfast Broadband as their stock-in-trade. Now they can stay here amidst our stunning scenery and we can compete for their presence on an equal footing.

– Cllr John Blackie


High-tech officers to spend more time on the beat

Humberside police officers will be able to spend more time on the beat thanks to new tablet computers which are being distributed throughout the force starting from today.

More time on the beat Credit: ITV Yorkshire

Over the coming months the tablets will be handed out to neighbourhood and emergency response officers who will be able to access police data systems while on the move, reducing the need for them to return to police stations to complete paperwork and access data.

It is claimed this new way of working will dramatically increase their time ‘on the beat’. Trials showed savings of up to two hours per shift were being made for each officer using the new technology.

Almost £1.5m of funding was secured from central government to support the bid.

Bradford residents must dial area code for local calls

From today residents in Bradford must dial the 01274 area code when making local calls.

There are no changes to the cost of local calls and if you forget to dial 01274 first then there is a free recorded message to remind you.

The industry regulator Ofcom is making the change to make sure there are enough phone numbers to go around. By including the area code in all local numbers, they can free up many more numbers.

For more information click here.

Huge engineering train used to prevent land slips

A new engineering train - one of the longest and most expensive ever - is aiming to make land slips like the one in Hatfield last year a thing of the past, by keeping the condition of the track up to scratch.

The huge slip in South Yorkshire in 2013 cut off the railway line at Hatfield, causing a mass of twisted tracks which put the line out of action for five months while repairs were carried out. It cost tens of millions of pounds to put right.

ITV's Mike Pearse has been to see the new train in action:


Big day for Humber's renewable energy sector

After years in the planning, and even last minute legal wrangling, the diggers today moved in to start the preparation work for the £450 million Able Marine Energy Park in North Lincolnshire.

Meanwhile in Grimsby, the energy giant E.on opened its offshore wind operations and maintenance base. Both projects are set to create thousands of jobs and transform the local economy. Sarah Clark reports.

Thousands of jobs in the pipeline as wind farm project progresses

The Communities Secretary today opened part of the Humber Offshore Wind Farm.

The development has been billed as a major milestone.

"We've hit significant milestones in the successful development of the Humber Gateway Wind Farm and hope to continue this trend until its proposed completion in 2015. So far, this has proved to be an important project for the area, creating a number of job opportunities and business for locally based companies during the construction process.

"The wind farm will be one of the UK's largest offshore sites, generating enough clean, green electricity to power up to 170,000 homes in the area, further highlighting the UK's continued investment in renewable energy sources."

– Matt Swanwick, Project Manager at E.ON

The site's £3 million onshore facility has also been completed in Grimsby Fish Dock, which will accommodate the Operations and Maintenance Team with offices, stores, a workshop and wind farm control room. The building has its own solar array, roof top wind turbines and charging points for electric vehicles - helping to boost the project's green credentials.

Two vessels, the Spirit of Hoton and Spirit of Sunthorp, have recently been delivered to the site and will shortly be deployed for operations.

The third vessel, the Spirit of Turmarr, will be delivered in March.

Each vessel has been named after old villages lost through coastal erosion along the Holderness Coast.

Milestone for Humber offshore Windfarm

There are major developments in the bid to make the Humber region the hub of the UK's renewable energy industry.

The Communities Secretary, Eric Pickles, today officially opened the Operations and Maintenance facility for the Humber Offshore Windfarm.

Eric Pickles listens to Cllr Chris Shaw, Leader of North East Lincolnshire Council

It comes after the £700 million Humber Gateway offshore wind farm reached a key milestone in its construction programme, including the successful completion of the first phase foundations.

24 foundations consisting of a tubular steel "monopile" have been driven into the seabed, creating the foundation bases for the turbines. The next major phase of work is set to commence in April, consisting of the installation of a further forty nine foundations.

Due to the scale of the development and upcoming work, E.ON will soon be recruiting an additional 13 people to join the Operations team.

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