Broadband energising Cornwall

More than a quarter of businesses that have benefitted from Cornwall’s superfast broadband upgrade say they have safeguarded or created jobs as a result of the scheme.

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Super fast boosts the Cornish connection

Cornwall has the highest percentage of households able to get super fast broadband of any rural region in Europe - according to the EU. That amounts to eight out of ten households in the county.

But other parts of the south west aren't faring so well. In some areas of Devon and Somerset, communities will have to wait until 2016 to be connected.

Our business correspondent Seth Conway reports

Superfast broadband promotes Cornish growth

More than 8 out of 10 households in Cornwall can now receive Superfast Broadband. BT has made the announcement today (Monday) declaring that the Duchy isn't only one of the best connected areas in Britain it's also the best connected rural region in Europe.

This research has real international significance because it starts to vindicate what we’ve said all along - that fibre broadband will energise our economy, generate jobs, and save public money.

With the help of major investment by the European Regional Development Fund, businesses can now take advantage of fibre broadband in Cornwall to become more competitive and more productive. For both businesses and the communities they serve, there can be no better investment in our future than super fast broadband.”

– Vice-President of the European Commission Neelie Kroes,

Research by Plymouth University and Buckman Associates found the increased speeds available with fibre broadband has led to 6 out of 10 small to medium sized businesses (SMEs) growing. 83% of SMEs say it's saved them time and money. More than a quarter have created or safeguarded jobs as a result.

“The economic benefits of the infrastructure investment will grow over time, but we have encouraging early signs that we are moving in the right direction in Cornwall. Given the challenging economic conditions for SMEs, it is great news that businesses are growing, generating new sales and creating jobs for the Cornwall economy.”

– Nigel Ashcroft, Superfast Cornwall programme director for the Cornwall Development Company

Some of Devon and Somerset have to wait until 2016 for faster broadband speeds. Connecting Devon and Somerset, in partnership with BT, has begun to roll out fibre broadband to remote parts of both counties. Sticklepath in Devon and Bradford on Tone in Somerset are now already connected.

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