Harborough broadband rollout will reach 8,450-mark soon

editorial image

More than 7,500 homes and business in the Harborough area have now been hooked up to superfast internet speeds with another 850 coming online in the coming months.

So far about 7,600 homes and businesses in Market Harborough, Kibworth, Fleckney, Great Glen, Smeeton Westerby, Foxton, Church Langton and Great Easton have been connected to fibre broadband.

And a further 850 properties are due to get the quicker fibre cable connected near their homes over the coming months.

The next batch to go live will be in Mowsley, Theddingworth, North Kilworth and East Langton.

It is all part of the Superfast Leicestershire project, run by Leicestershire County Council and BT.

Already 114 green roadside cabinets and 248km of fibre cables have been laid across the county as part of the £18.8 million scheme.

Brian Bruce, of Great Easton, is one of those taking advantage of the arrival of the technology in his village.

He said: “I was the second person in Great Easton to be connected to the new cabinet;

“I am very pleased with the performance so far.

“I used to use broadband for work and leisure, but I retired last year and so now use it more frequently for leisure.

“I find the internet to be invaluable in my retirement.”

Pam Posnett, the county council’s cabinet member for broadband, said: “We know the Harborough area is very keen to see faster broadband speeds so I am pleased our project is benefitting the area.”

In addition, another superfast broadband provider is seeking to increase coverage to parts of the Welland Valley in the Harborough area.

It is being provided commercially, without the need for public investment.

Gigaclear is securing demand for its service within some rural villages, including Glooston, Stockerston and Horninghold, targeting more than 750 premises.

The county council is also exploring opportunities to develop local projects, working closely with people in rural communities.

Initially, the county council will seek to support feasibility studies in communities to help bring forward superfast broadband.

A number of communities in the Harborough district have already expressed interest in exploring a community-led solution.

Over the border in Northamptonshire, villagers in Ashley recently raised £15,000 to sign a contract with BT to install a new fibre broadband cabinet and underground cable.

The work is underway and is expected to be completed in the spring.

Dozens of Ashley villagers took the opportunity to find out more about the imminent arrival of superfast broadband during a BT action day held at at Ashley Farm Shop on February 11.

Stephen Castens, from the Ashley Broadband Fundraising Campaign, said: “The information event was a huge success and lots of people came along to find out more.

“The overwhelming feeling is one of excitement as faster broadband speeds are now within touching distance.”

A similar event was held at the Fox Inn pub in Hallaton that night.