On Thursday 16th November Adam asked the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport for an update on the government’s continued work to rollout superfast broadband and build a fast, secure and ubiquitous digital Britain (09:44:25 to 09:45:56):
Adam Afriyie (Windsor, Conservative): 3. What steps she is taking to improve broadband speeds in rural areas.
Matt Hancock (Minister of State for Digital): As we have heard, superfast broadband is now available to more than 94% of premises. In 2010, only 42.5% of homes in Windsor had superfast broadband access. Today, that number is just shy of 94%.
Adam Afriyie (Windsor, Conservative): Windsor is a well-connected constituency—particularly given one notable resident—but we do have concerns that some rural and semi-rural areas may need further connectivity. In order to boost the creative, home education and home entertainment markets, does my right hon. Friend agree that developers and local authorities would do well to push on with ensuring that they deliver broadband infrastructure, such as ducting alongside the mains?
Matt Hancock (Minister of State for Digital): Windsor is not only well connected, but well represented. My hon. Friend’s point is that it is important that new developments get infrastructure and connectivity right from the start. We have agreed with the Home Builders Federation and major broadband providers that all new large developments of over 30 homes will get good connections, but we are also talking to the Department for Communities and Local Government to strengthen that requirement, because it is pretty absurd to build a new house without the ducting to take fibre all the way to it.
The MP for the Windsor constituency, Adam Afriyie, said:
“I was delighted to hear that the Government is continuing its excellent work rolling out superfast broadband to more and more households. Every month brings us closer to the goal of every family having superfast access
“In just 7 years this Conservative government has helped to truly transform the digital landscape. It’s difficult to believe that when Labour were last in government in 2010 just 42.5% of households in Windsor had access to superfast broadband, which has since more than doubled to 94%.
“To prevent that number sliding backwards I think that it is important housebuilders take broadband infrastructure into account before deciding on new developments by putting in ducting into their designs and I am glad that the government will be strengthening this requirement.
“Internet access is going to underpin our success in the 21st century in so many sectors. Whether it’s by giving children access to home learning, offering up greater opportunities to the self-employed or even ensuring that vulnerable people do not become socially isolated, we must ensure that Britain remains on the cutting edge.
- Adam Afriyie is the Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy to Ghana.
- He has a strong background in science, technology and innovation.
- He is currently Chairman of the Fintech APPG, Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology (POST) and President of the Conservative Technology Forum (CTF).
- He was shadow Minister for Science from 2007-2010 and has a background in the information services and technology sector.
- He is Patron of the Parliamentary Space Committee (PSC) and was Chair of the PSC between 2010 and 2015.
- The POSTnote on ‘UK Broadband Infrastructure’ can be found here.