If so you may be interested to know that Newry, Mourne and Down District Council have recently commissioned a feasibility study to review and analyse rural broadband.
The Council is asking business owners and residents within the district to take a confidential survey regarding their current broadband Internet service. The survey is the first step in a plan that will outline how to improve service throughout the district and the role of local government in the process.
Chairperson of Newry, Mourne and Down District Council Councillor Roisin Mulgrew commented:
“It is important that residents and businesses help us secure additional Government funding by completing the broadband survey. Unreliable connections stunt productivity, causing needless delays, costs and frustration. While businesses in every corner of the district are affected, research shows that it is rural areas and small businesses that are most likely to suffer. Identifying the problem areas and securing schemes through funding will help to increase access to services and allow greater adoption of digital services for residents. It will also help to grow the economy by both supporting existing businesses and encouraging new ones to become established in district.”
In recognition of the fact that many residents in the area still have limited access to broadband services, this project will seek to determine the actual internet access speeds residents and businesses are experiencing and build a database to further support these businesses and residents in the future through Government funded connection programmes.
Nicholas McCrickard, Chairperson of Mourne, Gullion and Lecale Rural Development Partnership said:
“Mourne, Gullion and Lecale Rural Development Partnership are delighted to provide grant assistance to Newry, Mourne and Down District Council to commission a feasibility study to investigate the needs of broadband in our rural areas. The Local Action Group has recognised the importance of rural broadband and the need to identify ‘not spot’ areas across Newry, Mourne and Down. We envisage this research project will provide conclusive results to underpin any future actions and infrastructure needs across our rural areas.”
Feedback from the survey will be used to support bids for future funding to help more residents and businesses benefit from fast and reliable internet connectivity.