King’s Lynn broadband boost could bring hundreds of jobs and millions for the West Norfolk economy
High-speed fibre broadband is now available to the first homes and businesses in Kings Lynn, BT said today.
It said more than 12,500 local householders and firms in the area would be joining the high-speed revolution as engineers complete planned local upgrades in the coming weeks.
BT wholesales the service to providers, meaning customers will have to sign up to company which provides it to benefit, or upgrade their package with their existing internet service provider.
Its availability map shows there are currently no plans to upgrade speeds at exchanges outside Lynn, such as Dersingham, Hillington, Gayton, Terrington or the Walpoles.
But today the company said it was expected to give a major boost to the local economy. A recent report by Regeneris Consulting predicted that over the next 15 years, the technology could give the economy of a typical town a £143m boost, create 225 new jobs, 140 new start-up businesses and 1,000 more homeworkers.
Dave Hughes, BT regional director for East of England, said: “The advent of fibre broadband in Kings Lynn is a massive fillip for businesses and households. It will enrich people’s lives and bring a much-needed boost to businesses in these economically challenging times.
“Fibre broadband will offer local firms and households new ways of working flexibly and allow large data and video files to be sent and received almost instantly. Other benefits include access to high quality videoconferencing and better back-up of computer systems.
“Local authorities and business organisations want fibre broadband to reach as many local homes and businesses as possible and we are offering to work with them to achieve their aspirations, while progressing our own plans to accelerate speeds in general.”
Alistair Beales, cabinet member for regeneration at West Norfolk council, said: “This is great news from BT for Kings Lynn.
“Fast broadband is an essential tool for local businesses and I’ve no doubt it will be a catalyst for the creation of new jobs.
“It will also transform the lives of local families, whether they’re using the technology for social networking, entertainment or education.”
BT’s local network business, Openreach, aims to make the high speed technology available to around two-thirds of UK homes and businesses by the end of 20141.
It will use a mix of fibre to the cabinet (FTTC) and fibre to the premises (FTTP) technologies. Both offer speeds much faster than those currently available to many UK homes and businesses.
FTTC, where fibre is delivered to the street cabinet, offers download speeds of up to 80Mbps and upload speeds of up to 20Mbps2. FTTP, where fibre runs all the way to homes and businesses, currently offers download speeds of 110Mbps and these are expected to be increased to 330Mbps shortly2.
By Spring 2013 BT aims to make speeds of 330Mbps2 commercially available in any area where fibre broadband has been deployed, potentially transforming the competitiveness of businesses.