UK Government investment has seen Fibre Optic Broadband come to more parts of the Scottish Borders.
The UK Government’s investment in the £428 million Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband roll-out will see more than 800,000 across Scotland receive fibre broadband. For the first time Scottish Borders’ residents and businesses in Hawick, Jedburgh, St Boswells and Kelso well be beneficiary of fibre optic broadband. Figures now show that around 80.1% of the Scottish Borders can now receive the service.
The goal to get Fibre Optic in the Scottish Borders was a collaboration between the Scottish Government and funding partners including, the UK Government through Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK), BT Group, local authorities and the EU via the European Regional Development Fund. Scottish Borders Council also contributed £8.4m to the programme locally.
Rachael Hamilton MSP for Ettrick, Roxburgh and Berwickshire: "This is positive news for the Scottish Borders. Residents and businesses will be delighted that fibre optic has come to their home or premises. This will help with the homework as well as helping local businesses grow.
"For too long the Scottish Borders has been crying out for fibre optic broadband, and now with the help of the UK Government we can see it finally appear.
"However, there are many in the Scottish Borders who still just want reliable broadband and now it is a real priority to get everyone connected and get everyone superfast broadband. There is still work to do."
John Lamont MP for Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk, who is vice chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Digital, commented: “It will come as a huge surprise to many of my constituents that the Scottish Government is boasting about how well they are doing improving broadband in the Borders. The reality is that far too many residents and businesses are paying over the odds for poor internet access and this needs to change sooner rather than later. I receive countless complaints about poor broadband connectivity and the failures of both the Scottish Government and BT to push forward noticeable improvements in the Borders.
“The UK Government has invested more than £100 million in broadband north of the border, far more than the Scottish Government’s contribution and have legislated so that soon, everyone will have a legal right to request a decent broadband connection. It is now up to the SNP to get on with the job of delivering improvement on the ground.
“Instead of patting himself on the back, the Rural Economy Secretary would be wiser to get on with the job of getting rural homes and businesses connected.”