Spreading the message of superfast broadband

A project is spreading the message of superfast broadband in Northumberland.

Saturday, 2nd July 2016, 7:45 am
Emma Scott with Nathan and Sylvia from the iNorthumberland team with their new bespoke bunting.

Members of the multi-million-pound iNorthumberland project will be visiting fairs, events and shows in the county.

Digital engagement manager John Cooper, business and community engagement officer Sylvia Pringle, project support officer Nathan Fuller and apprentice Shannon Johnson will be manning a ‘superfast stall’ and ready to demonstrate the benefits of superfast broadband and answer any questions.

Their next two visits will see them at Woodhorn Car Rally on Sunday, July 10, and at Bedlington’s Northumberland Live on Saturday, July 16.

John said: “The roll-out of superfast broadband across Northumberland is vital, but the maximum benefit for the county as a whole can only be felt if local people and businesses know that the technology is available, understand what it can do for them and start to make use of it.

“Already, around a third of those who can order fibre broadband in Northumberland have done so.”

Morpeth-based business Emma Bunting is just one business that has benefitted from faster broadband.

Founder and owner Emma Scott works from home designing and creating bespoke bunting. She has recently designed bunting for the iNorthumberland stall, depicting well-known Northumbrian landmarks including Blyth Beach huts, Amble pods, the Royal Border Bridge Berwick, Lindisfarne Castle and the Longstone lighthouse.

She said: “My whole business is online, so having a strong digital presence is essential to running my business.

“I believe developing my website has been pivotal in creating the “face” of Emma Bunting and I use Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram daily to interact with my customers and other businesses working within my industries.

“The internet has enabled me to reach a much larger geographical audience, faster and more effectively than any traditional methods.

“Speed and connectivity to me is exciting as it enables me to improve my customer service by responding to customers almost immediately.”

Simon Roberson, BT’s regional partnership director for the North East, said: “The network provided by BT’s local network business, Openreach, is open to all broadband service providers – which helps to drive competition and affordable prices.

“In fact, fibre broadband can now be a similar price to slower broadband so I would urge anyone who can get fibre to place an order with their internet provider superfast.”

More than 146,000 households and businesses in Northumberland are now able to connect to fibre broadband as a result of the iNorthumberland programme and BT’s commercial roll-out of the high-speed technology.

For up to date information on the roll-out visit www.inorthumberland.org.uk