Laura Sharman 21 October 2021

County areas are 'poor relation' in internet speeds, MPs warn

County areas are poor relation in internet speeds, MPs warn image

County ares could become the 'poor relation' to cities in the Government's gigabit rollout, MPs have warned today.

A new report from the County All-Party Parliamentary Group found that only one in five rural properties have access to gigabit broadband speeds, compared to over three quarters of London.

Levelling Up Digital Connectivity in Counties found while large towns and cities in the North and the West Midlands have on average 51% coverage, ten counties have got less than 15% gigabit coverage.

County MPs said they worry ministers will focus on the places easiest to rollout gigabit broadband to hit their 2025 target, putting county areas at a long-term disadvantage.

The report, produced with the County Councils Network (CCN), calls for the Government to consider devolving digital infrastructure budgets as part of county devolution deals.

Peter Aldous, chairman of the County All-Party Parliamentary Group, said: 'Whilst progress in connectivity has been rapid since 2019, much of this has been focused on London and the major cities so far, and there is a real risk that county areas are once again the poor relation in internet speeds unless the government urgently prioritises county areas.

'If the government’s levelling-up and economic recovery efforts are to be successful, providing fast and reliable broadband must be part of the equation. It is vital that this investment reaches left-behind county areas, and local county authorities stand ready to work with government on the rollout.'

For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Technical Support Officer – Signing & Lining

Rochdale BC
£22,571 - £24,920
It is an exciting time to join the Highways Service at Rochdale Council. Rochdale, Greater Manchester
Recuriter: Rochdale BC

Senior Engineer (Casualty Reduction & TRO’s)

Rochdale BC
£34,373 - £40-578
We have an interesting opportunity for a Senior Engineer (Casualty Reduction & TRO’s) to join the Network Management team. Rochdale, Greater Manchester
Recuriter: Rochdale BC

Senior Transport Planner

Rochdale BC
£34,373 - £40,578
It is an exciting time to join the Highways Service at Rochdale Council. Rochdale, Greater Manchester
Recuriter: Rochdale BC

Project Engineer x5

Rochdale BC
£34,373 - £40,578
We have an exciting opportunity for Project Engineers to deliver our highway capital programme. Rochdale, Greater Manchester
Recuriter: Rochdale BC

ICT Service Manager

Bolton Council
Are you an experienced vendor manager, service manager or contract manager? Bolton, Greater Manchester
Recuriter: Bolton Council

Partner Content

Circular highways is a necessity not an aspiration – and it’s within our grasp

Shell is helping power the journey towards a circular paving industry with Shell Bitumen LT R, a new product for roads that uses plastics destined for landfill as part of the additives to make the bitumen.

Support from Effective Energy Group for Local Authorities to Deliver £430m Sustainable Warmth Funded Energy Efficiency Projects

Effective Energy Group is now offering its support to the 40 Local Authorities who have received a share of the £430m to deliver their projects on the ground by surveying properties and installing measures.

Pay.UK – the next step in Bacs’ evolution

Dougie Belmore explains how one of the main interfaces between you and Bacs is about to change.