Superfast Cornwall has rolled out fibre-based broadband to 85 per cent of the county, earning congratulations from comedian Jimmy Carr.
Carr handed Superfast Cornwall a public sector marketing award, beating off competition from the Prime Minister’s Office and the Met Office, at the Chartered Institute of Marketing’s Marketing Excellence Awards at the Grosvenor House Hotel, London.
This is the partnership’s sixth major award since it was launched more than three years ago and coincides with the initial 85 per cent coverage goal being reached.
Superfast Cornwall, a partnership between the EU, BT and Cornwall Council, initially aimed to have 85 per cent of the region connected to superfast fibre-based broadband, before it revised its plans. It now aims to have at least 95 per cent of homes across the region able to access speeds of 25Mbps and above by the end of the year.
Ranulf Scarbrough, Superfast Cornwall programme director for BT, said: “This is wonderful recognition for a partnership, which has set the superfast broadband pace for rural areas not only in the UK, but also across Europe. The partnership has embraced traditional and new media channels to drive some of the highest fibre broadband take-up in the UK.”
Scarbrough added that by the time of the project’s completion, it was likely that superfast broadband would be available in more areas. He added: “We have done most of our infill with fibre, and we actually expect to get fibre to around 95-97 per cent of Cornwall, so we’re really talking about a final 3-5 per cent rather than 10. That in itself is a great achievement.”
Nigel Ashcroft, Superfast Cornwall programme director for Cornwall Development Company, the economic development company for Cornwall Council, said: “This proves the power of partnership in action, bringing an innovative and ground-breaking campaign to Cornwall, boosting the economy and making a real and lasting difference to the lives of people in the county. And we are certainly not going to rest on our laurels. Superfast Cornwall will continue to forge ahead, setting the standard for others to follow.”
Currently around 41,000 Cornish customers are already using high-speed fibre optic broadband. The majority of homes and premises are benefitting from FTTC (Fibre to the Cabinet) connections. Some places, such as Arcol in Threemilestone, have enjoyed the benefits of FTTP (Fibre to the Premises), a future-proofed connection which tests have shown can provide speeds of up to 10Gbps.
Image: Superfast Cornwall
Additional reporting by Thomas Newton