£13m plans for faster broadband get county's vote

6:00pm Thursday 14th February 2013

OXFORDSHIRE business and residents have said an overwhelming ‘yes’ to a multi-million pound broadband scheme.

Oxfordshire County Council consulted to uncover the level of demand after announcing plans to pump £13.86m into faster and more reliable connections by 2015.

Twenty one per cent of the 6,032 residents who responed claimed to have connections of less than 1Mbps – among the slowest available.

All of them, and 99 per cent of businesses that responded, said they would upgrade to a better connection if available.

Almost half said they would be willing to double the price they currently pay to get better speeds.

Leafield, near Witney, logged the highest number of responses per village or parish with 123.

The county council said it was still looking for parish broadband champions to help rural villages become more connected.

It currently has 253 people registered covering 173 parishes, but 173 parishes still do not have a representative to push for their broadband needs.

An announcement on the project is next expected in late spring.

Infrastructure improvements are expected to be delivered by the successful provider from 2013 onwards.

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