28,000 rural homes and businesses to get broadband upgrade

Rural full-fibre provider Quickline has signed a £60m contract under the Govnerment’s Project Gigabit to provide ultra-fast broadband to 28,000 homes and businesses across West Yorkshire, and parts of North Yorkshire and the East Riding.

The firm has already started installing connections in rural communities including those surrounding Selby, York, Bradford, Kirklees, Leeds, Wakefield, Harrogate, Skipton and Ripon, Keighley and Calder Valley. Stamford Bridge and Pocklington will also be covered by the scheme.

Under the £5bn Project Gigabit scheme, around 80 per cent of the UK is now covered by gigabit broadband, up from  6 per cent in 2019, and the UK is on track to achieve 85 per cent by 2025.

Quickline chief executive Sean Royce, said, “Project Gigabit is transformational and we are thrilled to play our part in changing the lives of people living in rural West Yorkshire.

“But this is about more than just broadband; we’re passionate about supporting rural communities, driving economic growth, creating jobs and helping to build the future digital workforce. We recognise the importance of aligning industry, primary schools, communities, parents, and higher and further education to ensure future skills meet future needs, and we want to inspire and energise the next generation.”

Digital infrastructure minister Julia Lopez said, “We’ve hit a huge milestone in connecting a million homes and businesses in hard-to-reach communities across the country to fast, reliable broadband. In a major boost for Yorkshire, Quickline can now get started on work to connect communities in rural areas in many parts of the county, improving lives for residents, helping businesses grow and supporting the economy.”

Cllr Charlie Dewhirst, East Riding of Yorkshire Council’s deputy leader, said, “Access to high-speed broadband services is vital for economic growth and the development of a strong local economy, particularly in rural areas. Delivery of many commercial and public services is increasingly dependent on good quality internet access, leading to real disadvantages to those residents and businesses without high-speed broadband.”