Pendle MP welcomes superfast broadband expansion

Andrew Stephenson MP at the House of Commons.

Andrew Stephenson MP at the House of Commons.

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Pendle MP Andrew Stephenson has welcomed the impact of Government support for superfast broadband after it was announced Government programmes has reached over a million homes and businesses.

The announcement came the same day Mr Stephenson paid a visit to Superfast Lancashire, the body tasked with bringing faster broadband to 675,000 homes and businesses across Lancashire.

He said: “At the time of the last General Election, less than half UK premises had access to superfast broadband but we’re already up to 78% under this Government as a result of £1.7 billion being invested. The Government is on target for 95% of the UK to have access to superfast broadband by 2017.”

The roll-out of superfast broadband is expected to provide a £1.5 billion boost to local economies. By 2024, investments in faster broadband are expected to be boosting rural economies by £275m. every month or around £9m. every day. Overall, the Superfast Broadband Programme will deliver returns of up to £20 for every £1 invested. Current UK coverage of superfast broadband is already the highest of the top five European economies and also leads other European countries in take up, competitiveness and pricing.

Mr Stephenson added: “The Government’s focus is now on the “final 5%” – areas in the hardest to reach parts in the country that are not covered by existing plans. £10m. is being invested in a series of pilot projects to find the best way of tackling these areas and the findings will be used to help decide how to make sure everyone benefits from superfast broadband.”

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