Nineteen out of 20 homes and businesses across Cheshire East can now access superfast broadband – thanks to the council-backed Connecting Cheshire partnership.
Investment by Connecting Cheshire, a partnership between four Cheshire councils, BT and central Government, with additional funding from the European Regional Development Fund, has now reached more than 85,000 premises with superfast broadband speeds of 24Mbps or more across the historic county since 2013.
Engineers from Openreach, the business responsible for the majority of the UK’s local phone and broadband network, have installed the fibre broadband infrastructure. To check availability in your area, visit the Connecting Cheshire website and enter the postcode or telephone number via www.connectingcheshire.org.uk/check-availability
Connection to fibre broadband does not happen automatically, anyone wishing to switch should contact their internet service provider or shop around for the best package to suit their needs and place an order. With more than 100 service providers offering broadband packages, there are plenty to choose from.
Faster broadband makes a significant difference to everyday online activity, for example a typical film in high definition (HD) can take an hour to download with standard broadband but can be done in a matter of minutes with a superfast connection.
Councillor Paul Bates, Cheshire East Council cabinet member with responsibility for ICT and digital, said:
“Fibre broadband is having a huge impact, with so many more online services reliant on a fast internet connection, whether at work or at home.
“I would urge everyone to check their availability and where possible, make a switch – as we have a ‘gainshare’ arrangement with Openreach, which means we can reinvest a share of their revenue into more coverage to reach areas not yet able to benefit.”
Matthew Hemmings, Openreach’s infrastructure director for the North, said:
“This is without doubt an extraordinary achievement and I’d like to thank the hundreds of Openreach engineers across Cheshire and our suppliers, who have worked so tirelessly to make this happen. High-speed fibre broadband helps to ensure that businesses thrive and don’t just survive and it helps to keep communities connected. Whatever you do online, you can do it better with fibre broadband.”
Connecting Cheshire is managed by the council’s wholly-owned, arms-length Skills and Growth Company.