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Thursday, 17 January 2013 (3034441)
Residents are better connected
by David Simister

THOUSANDS of Hesketh Bank residents are now able to take advantage of high speed broadband for the first time as part of a £2.5bn effort to improve internet connections across the north west.

BT said that the first home and businesses in the village had started signing up to the faster service last week as part of the company's moves to bring superfast fibre broadband to communities across the region.

Mike Blackburn, BT’s regional director for the north west, said: “BT’s fibre network is expanding rapidly across the region bringing a boost for local economies wherever it goes. Research suggests that within 15 years fibre broadband could bolster the economy of a typical town by £143 million and create 225 new jobs, 140 new start-up businesses and 1,000 more homeworkers1.

”As more than a million households and businesses have already discovered, fibre broadband opens up a whole new world to internet users. Whatever you’re doing online, you can do it better and faster with fibre. It’s great for education, shopping, entertainment, the social networking we now carry out routinely online and it also offers huge benefits for businesses and public services.

“The arrival of fibre in Hesketh Bank can really help local firms in these economically challenging times, opening up new ways of working and speeding up vital operations, such as file and data transfers, conferencing and computer back-up, all of which may also help cut costs.”

The broadband, called Outreach, uses fibre-to-the-cabinet (FTTC) technology, where the fibre runs from the exchange to a local roadside cabinet as a way of offering faster upload and download speeds. The company said the connection would enable a family to simultaneously download a movie, watch a TV replay service, surf the internet and play games online all at the same time. A whole album can be downloaded in less than 30 seconds and a feature length HD movie in less than 10 minutes.

The move - which comes in addition to an existing commitment by Lancashire County Council to bring higher speed broadband to all corners of the county - has also been welcomed by South Ribble MP Lorraine Fullbrook, who said this week the development was great news for residents.

“High-speed digital connectivity is a defining factor in our long-term success,” she said.

“Important developments, such as BT’s investment in super-fast broadband, offer us the potential to create new opportunities, services and growth, and provide a boost to our local economy.”

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