Swinford in the fast lane after broadband boost

From left, Harborough District Council leader Blake Pain, Cllr John Everett, Jane Robson and Michael Murphy from Swinford Parish Council and Paul 'Bimson,  regional partnership director for BT beside the Swinford broadband cabinet
From left, Harborough District Council leader Blake Pain, Cllr John Everett, Jane Robson and Michael Murphy from Swinford Parish Council and Paul 'Bimson, regional partnership director for BT beside the Swinford broadband cabinet

High-speed fibre broadband is coming to a rural village in the Lutterworth area three months ahead of schedule, enabling more residents and businesses to benefit from better internet speed.

Swinford is the first village in the Harborough area to benefit from a £530,000 investment by Harborough District Council to roll-out high-speed fibre broadband to more rural areas locally.

It is part of the £18.8 million Superfast Leicestershire partnership between Leicestershire County Council and BT.

High-speed fibre broadband is now available to more than 200 homes and businesses within the village and surrounding area.

Harborough Council’s investment will see a total 12 new broadband cabinets installed across the district, increasing the availability of fast, fibre broadband to more than 2,000 homes and businesses by the time the project is completed in March 2016.

These will be in addition to about 2,000 properties in the Harborough area which can already access high-speed fibre broadband services as a result of work carried out using the original Superfast Leicestershire funding.

Harborough Council’s leader Cllr Blake Pain said: “The project’s aim is to dramatically improve internet speeds for businesses and residents in rural areas and I am pleased to see Swinford become the first village to benefit from additional district council investment.”

Superfast Leicestershire aims to make fibre broadband available to 62,000 homes and businesses by the end of March 2016.

So far, more than 16,000 properties countywide now access to high-speed broadband through the scheme.

BT’s commercial rollout in Leicestershire has already made high-speed fibre broadband available to more than 293,000 homes and businesses.

County council cabinet member for broadband Pam Posnett said: “It’s great that the additional district investment is enabling us to deploy further into rural areas.

“Superfast broadband makes a real difference to the strength of our communities and local economy.”

BT’s regional partnership director Paul Bimson said: “Fast, reliable fibre broadband provides a massive boost to rural communities like Swinford that have been previously struggling with slow broadband speeds. Whatever you do online you can do it better with fibre broadband.”