WANTED: businesses affected by slow internet connection speeds

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BUSINESSES are being urged to help compile a clear picture of whether they are affected by slow internet connection speeds in South Holland.

The district council’s economic development experts are asking bosses to give their opinions on whether current broadband connectivity is hampering business so they can build a case for improvements.

It is hoped that by increasing available broadband speeds, businesses would be able to compete more fairly with those in areas which already enjoy faster connections.

Nigel Burch, economic development officer, said that South Holland currently has broadband “hotspots”, where connection speeds are reasonable, and “notspots”, where connection is low or non-existent.

He said: “We are looking at broadband speeds across the district to find if there are any issues and, if there are, we would like businesses to get in touch.

“We want to find out what upload and download speeds people are experiencing and if this causes any problems.

“The information that we gather will enable us to be able to help target any future resources effectively.”

Lincolnshire County Council has recently submitted a bid for a £20million slice of the Government’s BDUK pot, which it hopes to use to bring better broadband technology to large swathes of the county. The result is expected within eight to 12 weeks.

Justin Brown, head of enterprise at the county council, said: “We want the county to have first-class broadband. This isn’t a luxury – it’s vital to the growth of businesses, to the ability of local residents to access services, and to young people so they can download learning materials.

“If our bid is successful, the money will be used to give greater internet speeds to about 85 to 90 per cent of properties.

“We will then work on community-led solutions to improve things for the remaining homes and businesses.”

Mr Brown called on residents and businesses to show their support for the project by going to www.onlincolnshire.org Anyone interested in providing feedback to South Holland economic development team can contact Mr Burch at nburch@sholland.gov.uk Internet users can check their upload and download speeds at www.speedtest.net