- Essex is set to benefit as part of the first phase of the Government’s new £5 billion Project Gigabit which will deliver lightning fast broadband across the country.
- Prioritising rural and remote areas, more than one million households and businesses will be able to access next generation gigabit broadband in the first phase of the project.
- Through this project the Conservative Government is delivering on its manifesto promise to level up the entire country as we build back better.
Alex Burghart MP has welcomed the Conservative Government’s £5 billion Project Gigabit that will see more than one million hard to reach homes and businesses benefit from lightning fast broadband.
Up to 140,000 homes and business across Essex and the wider area will reap the rewards of Project Gigabit, with next-generation broadband speeds built to them.
This project prioritises areas that currently have slow connections and which would otherwise have been left behind in broadband companies’ rollout plans, putting the investment in place to make their available speeds rocket to more than 1,000 megabits or one gigabit per second. It means families no longer having to battle over bandwidth and will give people in rural areas the freedom to live and work more flexibly. Contracts for these first areas will go to tender in the spring with spades in the ground in the first half of 2022.
Project Gigabit will also make £110 million available to connect public sector buildings such as GP surgeries, schools and libraries in hard to reach areas, as well as investing £210 million in the Gigabit Broadband Voucher scheme, which will help cover the installation costs of bringing gigabit connectivity to homes and businesses in rural areas.
In plugging in and powering up every corner of the UK, this Conservative Government is helping to accelerate our recovery from the pandemic and level up the country, creating jobs and spreading wealth across Britain as we build back better.
Commenting, Alex Burghart MP said:
Families and businesses across Brentwood and Ongar are relying on the internet now more than ever to work, shop and stay in touch with loved ones, so connection speeds have never been more important. I am delighted that Essex has been prioritised in Project Gigabit and that homes and businesses across the region will be benefitting from lightning fast broadband. By investing in hard to reach areas across the UK, this Conservative Government is creating jobs and spreading wealth across Britain as we level up and build back better.”
Prime Minister Boris Johnson said:
Project Gigabit is the rocket boost that we need to get lightning-fast broadband to all areas of the country. This broadband revolution will fire up people’s businesses and homes, and the vital public services that we all rely on, so we can continue to level up and build back better from this pandemic.”
Digital Secretary Oliver Dowden said:
Project Gigabit is our national mission to plug in and power up every corner of the UK and get us gigafit for the future.
We have already made rapid progress, with almost 40 percent of homes and businesses now able to access next-generation gigabit speeds, compared to just 9 percent in 2019. Now we are setting out our plans to invest £5 billion in remote and rural areas so that no one is left behind by the connectivity revolution.
“That means no more battling over the bandwidth, more freedom to live and work anywhere in the country, and tens of thousands of new jobs created as we deliver a game-changing infrastructure upgrade.”
Notes to Editors
- Investing £5 billion through Project Gigabit to deliver gigabit broadband across the country, so that no community is left behind. Project Gigabit will see more than one million hard to reach homes and businesses benefit from lightning fast broadband (DCMS, Press Release, 19 March 2021, link).
- Delivering for people across Cambridgeshire, Cornwall, Cumbria, Dorset, Durham, Essex, Northumberland, South Tyneside and Tees Valley in the first phases of Project Gigabit. Up to 510,000 homes and businesses across these areas will have gigabit broadband built to them in the first phase of the project (DCMS, Press Release, 19 March 2021, link).
- Making £110 available to connect public sector buildings in the hardest to reach parts of the UK. GP surgeries, libraries and schools will also be amongst those benefitting from revolutionary gigabit infrastructure (DCMS, Press Release, 19 March 2021, link).
- Investing £210 million into the Gigabit Broadband Voucher Scheme for immediate financial support in getting gigabit speeds. People in rural areas will be able to access the voucher scheme to support our mission to get next-generation broadband speeds to hard to reach areas (DCMS, Press Release, 19 March 2021, link).
- Levelling up the country, boosting house prices and creating jobs through a £2.6 billion scheme to roll out superfast broadband to ‘commercially unviable’ parts of the UK. The programme has extended fast, reliable connectivity to homes which would previously have been on the wrong side of the UK as we level up the country (DCMS, Press Release, 3 February 2021, link).
- Connecting 500,000 premises to gigabit broadband since summer 2018. Almost 500,000 premises across the UK have been connected to gigabit-capable broadband since summer 2018 (DCMS, Press Release, 8 August 2020, link).