Essex County Council promises to improve broadband service

Broadband speed

Essex County Council has reiterated its commitment to providing better broadband speeds across the county, after Uswitch named and shamed five of its streets for having below par connection speeds.

Following the news last week that Essex has some of the slowest broadband speeds in the UK, the council said its working with BT to rectify the situation and the council is investing 24.6m into the Superfast Essex programme to roll out fibre broadband between 2014 and 2016.

The scheme addresses areas that are not already included in the commercial rollout by BT to ensure 87 per cent of Essex has access to fibre broadband by the end of 2016 and ensure a minimum speed of 2Mbps is available across the whole of the county.

The council said its Superfast Essex programme is also working to provide information to residents on how they can take up faster services available within their community.

Essex County Council responded to the report, saying five of the six areas mentioned as having the slowest broadband in the UK are already programmed to receive fibre either as part of the BT commercial rollout or the Superfast Essex programme.

It said some of the streets mentioned, including South Hanningfield Road in Chelmsford and Wheatley Road in Stanford-le-Hope are both getting speeds higher than those stated in the report. South Hanningfield Road has speeds of at least 2Mbps, while Wheatley Road received superfast fibre connectivity in 2010 as part of the BT commercial rollout.

The statement said: "It is likely that the residential properties in that area which are experiencing slow speeds would benefit from a change in service provider or package to take advantage of faster speeds already available."

Essex County Coucil advises people living in those areas who are not receiving faster broadband speeds to visit the Superfast Essex website in order to register for superfast services.

Clare Hopping
Freelance writer

Clare is the founder of Blue Cactus Digital, a digital marketing company that helps ethical and sustainability-focused businesses grow their customer base.

Prior to becoming a marketer, Clare was a journalist, working at a range of mobile device-focused outlets including Know Your Mobile before moving into freelance life.

As a freelance writer, she drew on her expertise in mobility to write features and guides for ITPro, as well as regularly writing news stories on a wide range of topics.