Homes and businesses in Aberdeenshire are soon to benefit from a scheme to deliver superfast internet speeds.
Fraserburgh and a number of other Aberdeenshire towns have been announced as the next areas to be connected to high-speed fibre broadband thanks to the further roll-out of the £410 million Digital Scotland partnership.
As part of this announcement, the districts join more than 56,000 premises across 14 local authority areas across Scotland who will benefit from fibre broadband services offering speeds of up to 80Mbps* being rolled out in the autumn, as BT engineers deploy the technology.
The new infrastructure will mean that multiple users in a home or business will be able to access the internet and download and share large files at the same time and more quickly than ever before.
Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said: “Today marks an important milestone for the people and businesses of Aberdeenshire as well as for the Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband partnership.
“This programme will lay the foundations of a world class digital Scotland, by extending fibre broadband access to parts of Scotland that wouldn’t otherwise be served commercially.
“The scale of the challenge of delivering fibre broadband into rural Scotland outstrips any other part of the UK and will generate significant economic benefits, including new jobs and increased productivity.
“This is an important step towards ensuring that Scotland has world-class digital connectivity by 2020. Our investment, and that of our partners in the project, will extend access to superfast broadband across Scotland.
This will be a key factor in ensuring Scotland’s long-term economic prosperity.”
Aberdeenshire Council Leader, Jim Gifford, said: “This announcement is a significant step in the programme to connect most of Aberdeenshire’s homes and businesses to fibre broadband over the next four years.
“Residents of Kirkton of Skene were the first in Scotland to benefit from faster broadband speeds through this project, earlier this month. It is great to see new communities being connected up so quickly after the launch of the national roll-out.
“Improving digital connectivity for homes and businesses in Aberdeenshire is a key priority for the council and we have invested more than any other local authority in the UK to make this happen.”
The Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband initiative consists of two projects – one covering the Highlands and Islands area and the other covering the rest of Scotland. Both projects are being delivered on the ground by BT. Locations will be announced quarterly for the life of the projects as the fibre network rolls out across Scotland. Further local detail will be provided as plans advance and anyone interested in the roll-out can keep up to date and get more detail at www.digitalscotland.org
In total, more than three quarters of a million homes and business premises are expected to benefit from the Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband initiative. Funding partners include the Scottish Government, Highlands and Islands Enterprise, the UK Government through Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK), local authorities and the European Regional Development Fund.
Alongside the commercial roll-out of superfast broadband, the Digital Scotland programme will see around 95 per cent of premises in Scotland connected to fibre broadband infrastructure by 2017/18.
Locations will be announced quarterly for the life of the projects as the fibre network rollout, which will bring faster fibre broadband within reach of more than 1.4 million Scottish homes and businesses, with more than one million premises already passed.