West Cornwall MP Derek Thomas is backing Openreach’s call for Marazion residents to pool Government-backed Gigabit broadband vouchers to secure ultrafast broadband.
The telecommunications giant says that the vouchers will help build a new, gigabit-capable network, where fibreoptic cables are run directly from the exchange all the way to each property.
Residents who don’t already have access to a 100 mbps broadband service can check if they qualify and pledge their voucher on the Connect My Community website.
Using the vouchers enables Openreach to work with the local community to build a customised, co-funded network and bring full fibre broadband to areas not included in any existing private or publicly subsidised upgrade schemes.
To claim vouchers which contribute towards the cost of building the new network, residents are asked to commit to ordering a Full Fibre service from a provider of their choice (using the Openreach network) for at least 12 months once the new network is available.
Eligible residents qualify for up to £1,500 for rural homes and up to £3,500 for small and medium-sized businesses under the UK Government’s Gigabit Broadband Voucher Scheme.
Connie Dixon, Openreach’s Partnership Director for the South West, said: “This is a really exciting opportunity for the community of Marazion to bring Full Fibre infrastructure to their town.
“Everyone who pledges a voucher will be doing their bit to help make Marazion one of the best-connected places in the South West. Pledging couldn’t be simpler, but we need residents to act quickly – as the scheme closes in March 2021.”
Connie added: “Thousands of homes and businesses across Cornwall can already upgrade to the Openreach Full Fibre network and local people can use our online postcode checker to see what’s now available.”
Mr Thomas said: “Now, more than ever, coastal communities need fantastic connectivity to fully interact with the world.
“Full fibre technology will make a massive difference to local homes and businesses and I urge residents in Marazion to consider visiting the Connect My Community website and pledge their Gigabit broadband vouchers for the common good and help us to make sure that nobody’s left behind.”
Fibre optics are strands of glass around one-tenth the thickness of a human hair and transmit data using light signals. Fibre is smaller, lighter and more durable than copper cabling and less vulnerable to damage.
In a report by the Centre for Economics & Business Research (Cebr) – “Full Fibre broadband: A platform for growth” - commissioned by Openreach last year, revealed that connecting everyone in the South West to ‘Full Fibre’ broadband by 2025 would create a £4.3 billion boost to the region’s economy.
The report also revealed that more than 42,000 people across the South West could be brought back into the workforce through enhanced connectivity. This could include roles in small businesses and entrepreneurs – as well as allowing thousands more people to work remotely.