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Get up to £3,000 to improve your business connectivity

Date issued: 23 January 2018

Businesses in Colchester will soon be able to take advantage of a new Government scheme making vouchers of up to £3,000 available to pay for the capital costs of installing ultrafast fibre broadband.

Colchester Borough Council is working with the Government to make the voucher scheme available to give local businesses much faster connectivity. The vouchers will effectively pay for the installation of up-to gigabit fibre connectivity, which will help boost the creative and digital sectors, as well as other businesses heavily reliant on sending and receiving large amounts of data, multimedia content or high-quality collaborative working and video conferencing. Gigabit is up-to 50 times faster than the antiquated telephone line-based connectivity still used by many businesses in the town centre.

A full-fibre gigabit connection is transformative, and gives businesses:

  • the ability to upload and download huge amounts of data at blisteringly fast speeds
  • the capacity for high definition video conferencing with multiple participants
  • unprecedented reliability and service up-time
  • a future-proof connection, meaning your connectivity is scalable and can be increased as and when your business requires it, without the need for new infrastructure to be installed
  • the ability to compete technologically with companies based in London and other cities, who may already be taking advantage of ultrafast connectivity

A fibre network that can provide up-to-gigabit broadband has already been deployed in Colchester town centre and is owned by the Borough Council. It currently reaches the addresses of some 850 small-to-medium enterprises (SMEs), with the additional capacity to service apartment buildings and other residential accommodation within its footprint. 

The voucher scheme is part of the Government's £200 million Local Full Fibre Network Fund (LFFN), which is designed to boost the take-up of ultrafast broadband across the country. The Council will be working with the LFFN during 2018 and later years, to expand the reach of gigabit connectivity to the rest of the town. It is planned that the network will grow to span the whole borough over the next few years.

Cllr Tim Young, Portfolio Holder for Business and Culture, said: "Full fibre is considered the gold standard for fast, reliable broadband. By ensuring that our local businesses have this ultra-fast connection now, we can future-proof Colchester as it grows.

"I encourage any business owners who would like an improved connection, particularly those close to the existing network in the town centre, to register their interest today and demonstrate the need for full-fibre in our borough."

For further information, or to register your interest, please write to: