Backing for new superfast internet

Elaine Silverwood
Elaine Silverwood
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THOUSANDS of businesses are set to be given a boost with the introduction of a superfast broadband connection.

BT’s £2.5bn investment in the North West will see more than 4,800 homes and businesses in Kirkham and almost 5,500 in Lytham able to access the fastest internet speed available in 2013.

The download time of the internet will be increased from the average 7.6 to 330 megabytes per second and make the area an attractive location for new companies which regularly use the world wide web.

Research carried out by Regeneris Consulting predicted during the next 15 years BT’s fibre broadband could give the economy of a typical town a £143m boost, create 225 new jobs and 140 new start-up businesses.

Elaine Silverwood, of Kirkham Chamber of Trade, said: “It’s very positive. I know in rural areas there’s a lot or problems because internet is virtually non-existent, so they will be relieved.

“We are on broadband in my shop and I don’t have any problems, so it will be interesting to know what improvements there will be.

“In the town centre, any improvements on broadband will be a bonus.”

BT will work in partnership with Lancashire County Council to roll out the connection in Lytham and Kirkham.

Robert Silverwood, chairman of Lytham Chamber of Trade, added: “This is a fast world with fast businesses and turnover, so it’s great news.

“The difference between some types of broadband speeds are enormous and it’s a bonus for businesses to receive this.”

The speed of the internet connection equates to a whole music album being downloaded in less than 30 seconds and a feature length high definition movie in fewer than 10 minutes, much quicker than current times.

Geoff Driver, leader of Lancashire County Council, said: “This is great news for Kirkham and Lytham, and is part of the wider project to bring the benefits of superfast broadband to the whole county.

“Fast broadband is an essential tool for local businesses and I’ve no doubt it will be a catalyst for the creation of new jobs.

“It will also benefit local families, whether they’re using the technology for social networking, entertainment or education.”

Mike Blackburn, BT’s regional director for the North West, added: “The arrival of fibre broadband in these communities is a massive shot in the arm for the local economy, creating new businesses, jobs and educational opportunities.

“Local firms and households who make the switch to fibre broadband will be able to do so much more with their connection.”