Make getting connected to fibre your New Year’s Resolution in Staffordshire

Faster broadband helps you do more online, and the festive period is a great time to think about upgrading

Staffordshire residents are being urged to get connected to faster broadband in 2020 and improve their access to a broad range of services and opportunities.

Faster broadband helps you do more online, and the festive period is a great time to think about upgrading. Having access to faster speeds is useful for shopping online and picking up a sales bargain, planning next year’s holiday, or streaming a movie.

People can find the service provider that’s right for them using the boostyourbroadband.com website – an impartial service from Ofcom and supported by consumer organisation Which? Alternatively, they can go to Superfast Staffordshire’s own www.superfaststaffordshire.co.uk.

Across Staffordshire, more than 80,000 homes and businesses can now benefit from faster speeds thanks to the county council’s £32 million Superfast Staffordshire partnership with Openreach – the UK’s largest telephone and broadband network - and the government’s BDUK (Building Digital UK) programme.

The work is proving popular as well, with more than 62 per cent of premises already having contacted their service provide and upgraded to a superfast connection.

Faster broadband is now considered as an important feature in the home, enabling people to access a range of leisure, education and other services and to work flexibly.

The most recent areas to benefit from the Superfast Staffordshire rollout include full fibre to the premises solutions in rural locations such as Draycott in the Moors in Staffordshire Moorlands, Whitmore in Newcastle-under-Lyme, Barlaston in Stafford, Hoar Cross and Dunstall in East Staffordshire, Pillaton and Dunston Heath in South Staffordshire and Huddlesford in Lichfield.

Staffordshire County Council’s economic growth leader, Mark Winnington, said: “While well over half of the property owners able to connect to faster broadband through the Superfast Staffordshire scheme have done so, we’re urging more to get in touch and find out how easy it is to make the switch at such little cost.

“Connection to faster broadband speeds helps to improve people’s day-to-day living through better access to a range of services. They can choose any provider and can find out more on the Superfast Staffordshire website.

“People can also find out about broadband provision and how easy it is to upgrade or change provider through the new boostyourbroadband.com website from Ofcom. We are pleased to have nearly reached 96 per cent coverage across the county, but we will continue to do all we can to find solutions for those not yet in included in the plan.”

Kasam Hussain, Openreach’s Regional Partnership Director, said: “We are delighted so many people are using fibre across Staffordshire. Our partnership has been a real success story so far, but we know there is still more to do. We’re now working in some of the most rural parts of the county, but our engineers are highly-skilled in overcoming the challenges this brings.

“Our partnership with Staffordshire County Council is just part of Openreach’s work in the West Midlands. We’re making some of the fastest broadband speeds in the UK available here through our Fibre First programme. More than 2,600 of our people live and work here and earlier this year we announced nearly 200 new jobs.

“Our work in Staffordshire continues throughout the year, even in the worst of the winter weather. Our engineers are fully equipped to deal with snow, ice, wind and rain. We have a huge stock of winter weather equipment including 62,000 kilos of rock salt; 1,700 snow shovels; 3,400 ice and snow grips for footwear; 3,500 sets of snow socks for van tyres; 20,000 litres of screenwash; and 20,000 de-icer sprays”.

Across the county, according to independent thinkbroadband.com, more than 96 per cent of premises are able to order superfast broadband.

People can find out more at www.superfaststaffordshire.co.uk