Laura Jones, South Central General Manager at Gigaclear, comments: “We’re very pleased to be able to say we’ve completed our build in West Berkshire.  Gigaclear’s work with Superfast Berkshire reached the final stages in the Summer of 2020, with only a hundred or so properties in outstanding wayleave areas to go.  With those properties now connected, we’re officially finished.  

“It’s satisfying to know the job’s done, but really the most significant thing is knowing that all these people can now access ultrafast broadband after years of dealing with painfully slow internet.  The pandemic really underlined how important internet access is, especially in historically underserved areas of the UK.  We’re looking forward to closing out BDUK Berkshire Lot 2 soon and returning to the area on a commercial basis.”

Since 2015, Gigaclear has laid more than 700km (435 miles) of fibre across rural West Berkshire to connect more than 14,000 homes and businesses to its full-fibre, gigabit-capable network both commercially and as part of Superfast Berkshire, with coverage reaching 98%.

Howard Woollaston, Executive Portfolio Holder for Internal Governance Leisure and Culture at West Berkshire Council, says: “I’m delighted that the majority of West Berkshire residents and businesses in rural areas are now receiving superfast broadband as part of this project.

“This high level of connectivity has been a priority for us. 98% coverage is a great achievement and Superfast Berkshire has put our district into the very top tier of ultrafast broadband behind only parts of London and Bournemouth.

“I hope that with Project Gigabit recently launched by DCMS, the remaining 2% will have similar access.

“On a personal level, as a Gigaclear customer, the rollout has transformed my family’s digital life. Without it, with four of us working from home during lockdowns and with multiple screens, we would have been lost.”

Digital Infrastructure Minister Matt Warman, says: "Thanks to our £1.8 million investment residents and businesses in West Berkshire can now take advantage of fast and reliable internet speeds.
 

"Working with companies like Gigaclear, we're bringing better broadband to communities right across the UK and our new £5 billion Project Gigabit will ensure even the hardest to reach areas don't miss out."

The Superfast Berkshire Programme will continue in East Berkshire to increase coverage to similar levels as West Berkshire. Gigaclear will also continue to extend its network in West Berkshire on a commercial basis. For more information, visit www.gigaclear.co.uk.

For further information, please contact Energy PR on 01993 823 011 or email Gigaclear@energypr.co.uk

About Gigaclear:

Gigaclear designs, builds and operates a full fibre, ultrafast broadband network in rural areas across central and southern England. Established in 2010, our network now reaches homes and businesses in more than 450 communities across 22 counties – and growing. We are working hard to provide rural properties, farms and businesses with the UK’s best broadband speeds. Gigaclear’s full fibre ultrafast network transforms communities by allowing residents to benefit from fast, reliable broadband speeds in an ever-progressive online world.

Gigaclear designs and builds its new networks to rural communities where there is a need for better broadband using commercial investment.  In some communities we are working with Local Bodies to deliver this essential service with subsidy under the Building Digital UK (BDUK) scheme.

Gigaclear Ltd is principally owned by Infracapital, a leading European Infrastructure investor.

About Superfast Berkshire:

The Superfast Berkshire programme started in 2011, as part of the Government's subsidised national programme, to improve broadband coverage in areas deemed not commercially viable by the private sector. The programme is backed by all six Berkshire unitary councils (West Berkshire Council, Bracknell Forest Council, Reading Borough Council, Slough Borough Council, The Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead, Wokingham Borough Council) and the Thames Valley Berkshire Local Enterprise Partnership (TVB LEP).

More information is available here: http://www.superfastberkshire.org.uk and here: https://labs.thinkbroadband.com/local/berkshire.

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