Homes and businesses in Perth and Kinross are soon to benefit from a scheme to deliver superfast internet speeds.
Balbeggie, Blairgowrie, Bridge of Earn, Caputh, Errol, Glencarse, Inchture and Stanley have all been announced as the next areas to be connected to high-speed fibre broadband thanks to the further roll-out of the £410 million Digital Scotland partnership.
As part of this announcement , the towns join more than 56,000 premises across 14 local authority areas across Scotland who will benefit from fibre broadband services offering speeds of up to 80Mbps* being rolled out in the autumn, as BT engineers deploy the technology.
A further 67 places across the country – from Moray to Dumfries and Galloway and from Perth and Kinross to the Scottish Borders – will also benefit as part of this announcement.
The new infrastructure will mean that multiple users in a home or business will be able to access the internet and download and share large files at the same time and more quickly than ever before.
Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said: “Today marks an important milestone for the people and businesses of Perth and Kinross as well as for the Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband partnership.
“This programme will lay the foundations of a world class digital Scotland, by extending fibre broadband access to parts of Scotland that wouldn’t otherwise be served commercially.
“The scale of the challenge of delivering fibre broadband into rural Scotland outstrips any other part of the UK and will generate significant economic benefits, including new jobs and increased productivity.
“This is an important step towards ensuring that Scotland has world-class digital connectivity by 2020. Our investment, and that of our partners in the project, will extend access to superfast broadband across Scotland. This will be a key factor in ensuring Scotland’s long-term economic prosperity.”
The Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband initiative consists of two projects – one covering the Highlands and Islands area and the other covering the rest of Scotland. Both projects are being delivered on the ground by BT. Locations will be announced quarterly for the life of the projects
as the fibre network rolls out across Scotland. Further local detail will be provided as plans advance and anyone interested in the roll-out can keep up to date and get more detail at www.digitalscotland.org
Brendan Dick, BT Scotland director, said: “Today marks an important next phase in the Digital Scotland deployment, with local communities among the latest set to benefit. This technological change will help them to compete and thrive in the 21st century.
“New locations for fibre will be announced regularly as our engineers carry out detailed local surveys and finalise plans. Delivering a project on this scale is one of the most significant challenges we’ve faced anywhere in the UK in recent years. It’s great to see this major step forward today, which will benefit rural communities on and off the Scottish mainland.
Councillor John Kellas, Perth & Kinross Council’s Enterprise & Infrastructure Convener said: “I am delighted that businesses and residents in Perth & Kinross will start to benefit from this investment which includes £1.2m from the Council and help them to grow and access services”
In total, more than three quarters of a million homes and business premises are expected to benefit from the Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband initiative. Funding partners include the Scottish Government, Highlands and Islands Enterprise, the UK Government through Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK), local authorities and the European Regional Development Fund.
Alongside the commercial roll-out of superfast broadband, the Digital Scotland programme will see around 95 per cent of premises in Scotland connected to fibre broadband infrastructure by 2017/18.
Locations will be announced quarterly for the life of the projects as the fibre network rollout, which will bring faster fibre broadband within reach of more than 1.4 million Scottish homes and businesses, with more than one million premises already passed.