Firms Can Now Bid On £10M Superfast Broadband Fund

Mar 27, 2014

Culture Secretary Maria Miller has announced the new £10m superfast broadband fund is open to bids from companies wishing to help take speedy Internet to Britain’s most remote communities.

According to Miller, the UK is well on track to hit its target of superfast broadband being available to 95% of the country by 2017 and so the shift has focused to making sure it benefits those in places harder to reach.

“Government’s rollout of superfast broadband is already reaching more than 10,000 homes every week but now we need to focus on the hardest to reach communities,” claimed Miller.

The government believes the multimillion pound funding will enable a range of pilot projects to be run, ensuring no remote areas are left untouched in the technological transformation across Britain.

 “These pilots will be instrumental in helping us understand how to overcome the challenges of reaching the most remote areas of the UK and I hope to see a wide range of suppliers coming forward with innovative proposals,” Miller added.

Suppliers wishing to submit bids can do so in three different categories:

  • seeing whether a technology that works can be used in remote areas
  • trying novel operating models such as joining smaller networks together into a common network
  • testing innovative public/private funding models that could bring in new investment.

A tender is open in the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) and notes that successful individual service providers will be awarded between £500,000 and £3.3m.

Welcome News For Rural Residents?

This news comes following research that has found that children living in rural areas may be disadvantaged by their lack of access to superfast broadband.

“The aim of this fund is to help people living in very remote areas secure the benefits of superfast broadband,” claimed Dan Rogerson, Rural Affairs Minister.

“Fast and reliable broadband coverage is crucial in building a stronger economy and fairer society for farmers and all rural businesses to be able to compete and grow,” he added.




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