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The Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) has recently launched a further funding round of the Rural Community Broadband Fund (RCBF), which will be open for Expression of Interest submissions until 24 May 2013.
The RCBF supports community-led broadband schemes in those rural areas which are identified as falling into the 10% ‘hardest to reach’. Eligible projects must deliver broadband downloads speeds of at least 24 Mbps, and applicants will be expected to provide evidence of strong local demand for superfast broadband (rather than standard broadband) at the Expression of Interest stage. Typically, the RCBF will provide grant funding for up to 50% of a project’s total costs, with the remaining funding to be met from private sources.
For more information on this fund can be found on the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) website.
Defra website (external website).
The RCBF is separate to the Government’s main broadband programme which is being delivered locally through the ‘Broadband East Riding’ project. The latter project aims to ensure that standard broadband (providing download speeds of at least 2 Mbps) is available across the whole East Riding by 2015, and that superfast broadband will be available to the majority of residents and businesses. The RCBF is aimed at those communities that will not have superfast broadband infrastructure provided through the ‘Broadband East Riding’ project.
Please contact Steve Howdle, Rural Development Officer, Rural Policy & Partnerships Team, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, Tel: 01482 391696 for further information.
IT consultant Richard Hale has saved thousands on fuel bills and slashed his annual commute by more than 20,000 miles – thanks to the Broadband East Riding programme.
Self-employed Richard said existing broadband speeds to his home in Bridlington were so slow he was forced to make a 140 mile commute to offices in York and Leeds to connect with clients.
But the arrival of superfast broadband as part of the Broadband East Riding roll-out has enabled him to stay put, ditch his long commute and work from the family home, serving customers around the globe.
Families can benefit from superfast broadband by streaming HD videos without waiting for them to buffer, download the latest movies on your TV box, browse the web quicker than before, play on-line gaming with people around the world - all at the same time - without any annoying delays.
Superfast broadband can help you to keep in touch with relatives around the world using video services without having to wait to connect and it gives you a smoother connection whilst chatting.
Superfast broadband can help businesses reach new markets, connect with customers and suppliers quickly, cut costs with online data storage and work from home or on the go.