News that BT is planning to extend its fibre broadband roll-out plans to more communities across the UK has been welcomed by Community Broadband Scotland (CBS).
CBS is funded by the Scottish Government and delivered by Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE). It works with communities in parts of Scotland which are the least likely to benefit from mainstream broadband rollout due to technical and geographical challenges.
CBS Director Zoe Laird says BT’s commitment to do whatever it can to work with communities, including potential co-funding, is very welcome news.
“CBS funds and supports communities who want to build and own their own innovative and locally-led broadband solutions in the hardest-to-reach locations across the country,” said Zoe.
“BT’s latest announcement doesn’t change that important role. However, it does mean that some communities which were previously considered beyond the reach of fibre broadband may now have that option. CBS will be delighted to work in partnership with BT, and to co-invest, where that will deliver the best result to these communities.
“Both the Scottish Government and HIE are already collaborating with BT on fibre broadband rollout across the country, and we look forward to extending that partnership to deliver joint BT/Community Broadband Scotland projects in future.
"The support we offer doesn’t only deliver broadband connectivity. It empowers communities to become more resilient in many other ways, including attracting population and underpinning business development.”
Communities can find out more about Community Broadband Scotland through the HIE website at www.hie.co.uk/cbs
See the BT news release here >
Community Broadband Scotland (CBS) was established by the Scottish Government to work with any community in Scotland in an area unlikely to be reached by commercial broadband rollout or through Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband or the HIE/BT partnership in the Highlands and Islands. The solutions are flexible and include fibre and wireless. Some will be capable of reaching superfast speeds while others provide a simple step change increase for the lowest speeds.
CBS supports communities to plan for the long term, with maintenance and replacement of infrastructure built into the business plans for the CBS projects. CBS works closely with communities to ensure they get the best solution for their needs and their location and offers a great deal of technical support to develop the best solution.
CBS is being delivered by Highlands and Islands Enterprise throughout Scotland and has a total budget of £16.5m available until 2020.