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Cornish businesses benefitting from superfast broadband

12 Nov 2012
BT broadband rollout in Cornwall is bringing benefits to businesses

The beauty of living somewhere remote is the chance to get away from it all, to escape the madness of city life and enjoy some fresh air and countryside.

However, there are compromises to be made: poor transport links, a lack of services and, in the past, terrible internet connections. However, the importance of ensuring the UK's final-third is hooked up to good quality internet has been on the government’s agenda for some time.

This is to ensure those living in remote areas are not cut off from the digital world in which we now live and to help businesses in these regions prosper by being able to take advantage of the benefits a fast, good-quality internet service can bring.

Nowhere is this better in evidence than Cornwall. The most westerly of all counties in the UK, it is a predominately rural area that has struggled in the past to encourage people to stay or move to the county for anything other than retirement.

So when the county won major funding from the European Commission in conjunction with BT to bring superfast services to the entire county it was seen as a major boon and since BT started its work on 30 September 2010, the benefits are already being seen.

The Driftwood Spars pub in St Agnes is a classic slice of coastal Cornwall, situated by the sea and serving locals and tourists alike. It got online with a 40Mbit/s service in August 2011 and is already seeing numerous benefits, as landlady Lou Treseder told V3.

“Before our broadband was very bog-standard and frustrating and although we tried to offer customers Wi-Fi access we could have 200 to 300 people in here with iPhones and iPads who wanted to be online, which made it very slow” she said.

“With the faster services people can get online, update their profiles - which is good for us as it spreads our business online, and we can host workers here by offering them good internet access.”

The pub has also launched unique initiatives based on its superfast service such as video conference wine-tasting with vineyards in France and New Zealand, so the growers of the wine can talk to those in the pub about what they’re drinking.

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Dan Worth

Dan Worth is the news editor for V3 having first joined the site as a reporter in November 2009. He specialises in a raft of areas including fixed and mobile telecoms, data protection, social media and government IT. Before joining V3 Dan covered communications technology, data handling and resilience in the emergency services sector on the BAPCO Journal

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