Preseli MP Stephen Crabb’s campaign for better broadband for all has received a financial boost following collaboration between the UK and Welsh Governments.
Since May 2019, the UK Government led Gigabit Broadband Voucher Scheme has made available vouchers worth up to £3,500 for rural SMEs and up to £1,500 for rural residential premises to install new gigabit-capable internet connections. But with Wales’ rural topography, especially in Pembrokeshire, it has proved to be more expensive to roll out the infrastructure needed.
Residents and businesses now have access to more funding for better broadband, as UK Government and Welsh Government work together to “top up” the Gigabit Broadband Voucher Scheme, increasing the maximum available to premises in Wales to £3,000 for residential premises and £7,000 for SMEs respectively.
More than 6,000 Pembrokeshire homes and businesses could be eligible to have their broadband upgraded.
Ministers from both the UK and Welsh governments are urging Welsh businesses and communities to apply for these vouchers so that they can future-proof their internet connections and be ready to benefit economically and socially from increased connectivity.
To find out how the vouchers work and if you are eligible visit: https://gigabitvoucher.culture.gov.uk/
Commenting on the announcement, Stephen Crabb MP said:
"Connecting to fast and reliable broadband has been vital during the COVID-19 lockdown, allowing seamless working from home and enabling families and friends to stay in touch. Better broadband will also be vital to rebuilding our economy as lockdown begins to ease.
"Better broadband has been a long term campaign of mine, and we’ve had positive news already this year with the UK Government introducing the Shared Rural Network and Universal Service Obligation to increase mobile and broadband connectivity respectively.
"The collaboration between the UK and Welsh governments on this scheme is hugely welcoming and a boost for the 6000 or so premises in Pembrokeshire that could be eligible for support. I urge them to visit the website to check eligibility and to explore alternative ways to secure super-fast broadband.”