Digital Rutland and Openreach launch broadband boost campaign


It’s hoped a new video and community workshops highlighting the benefits of faster broadband speeds will encourage more people in Rutland to check if they’re able to upgrade.

It’s hoped a new video and community workshops, highlighting the benefits of faster broadband speeds, will encourage more people in Rutland to check if they’re able to upgrade.

Presented by independent broadband expert Rob Kirwan, and produced by the Digital Rutland partnership between Rutland County Council and Openreach, the short film features local residents and business owners who’ve already upgraded to a superfast broadband connection, and encourages others to do the same.

More than 96 per cent of homes and businesses in Rutland can already upgrade, and more than six out of ten – the highest in the country - have already done so. But it’s thought many people might not be aware it’s available, think they’ve automatically been upgraded or mistakenly believe it’s going to be too expensive.

Council Leader Oliver Hemsley said: “Making superfast broadband as widely available as possible is a priority for the council, and our work with Openreach has made a huge impact right across the county. We’ve taken faster speeds into our most rural communities, transforming the way people can use the internet for home life or business use.

“It’s proving really popular but we still hear from people who are don’t realise they can order superfast broadband, months after we’ve made the service available where they live. The best place to check what’s available to your home or business is to check the Openreach website, or contact Digital Rutland directly. Upgrading doesn’t always cost more money either. There’s a huge amount of choice from a wide range of broadband providers, and in many cases there is no cost difference.”

High-speed fibre broadband makes everything happen more quickly. With everyday life being more connected, fast and reliable broadband is important for all of the gadgets we have in our homes, such as phones, smart TVs, games consoles and even kettles!

It doesn’t just make uploading and downloading music, films and photos quicker. It also means everyone can do what they want online at the same time, without lagging.

For businesses, it can increase productivity, with new things possible including talking to colleagues, clients or suppliers through high-quality video calls. Or you can do things like use shared online workspaces to collaborate with others quickly and efficiently.

Upgrading doesn’t happen automatically. People living or working a fibre-enabled area need to contact their service provider to enquiry about upgrading to a fibre package.

Carl Sproston, Openreach’s partnership director for the Midlands, said: “Our role is to put in place the broadband network that enables people to do what they need now, but to also future-proof things for generations to come. Technology moves on at such a pace and having fast and reliable broadband becomes more important each and every day. I’d advise everyone living and working in Rutland to visit the Openreach website and check what services are available to them. And because Openreach’s network is open, people can still choose a broadband company package of their choice.”

Across Rutland, superfast broadband has been made available to around 10,000 homes and businesses since 2012, thanks to the work of the Digital Rutland partnership. It’s in addition to the thousands of premises also covered by Openreach’s own commercial rollout.

As part of efforts to increase the take up of superfast broadband even further in Rutland, a series of free workshops have been organised and will take place in local communities throughout March, offering expert advice on how to upgrade.

Around 1,500 Openreach employees live and work in the East Midlands, including Rutland. And in recent weeks, it was announced that workforce is expanding with around 185 new trainee engineers being recruited by the company to work on improving broadband speeds across the region.