SUPERFAST broadband has been switched on at Hereford’s Enterprise Zone today (Thurs).
A collaboration between the Fastershire project and Hereford Enterprise Zone has brought fibre broadband to Rotherwas transforming available internet speeds.
The switch on is just the first stage of an extensive programme of broadband delivery and support for both existing businesses and those moving to the Enterprise Zone at Skylon Park.
HR4 Ltd - which supplies project support services across the world – was one of the first businesses to benefit.
There, director Roger Peacock said fast upload and download speeds were essential to operate effectively in international markets.
“We are a global business, delivering complex packages of support to companies and organisations here in the UK and overseas. Superfast broadband services allow us to work more effectively with our consultants and clients wherever they are in the world and to use new technologies and working techniques to be even more productive,” he said.
Bill Jackson, Chairman of the Hereford Enterprise Zone, said poor connectivity was a barrier to growth for businesses which needed to be able to access superfast broadband to compete on a national and global stage.
The switch on, said Mr Jackson, was the first stage in developing a “complete range” of competitive connectivity services for Skylon Park to suit businesses of all sizes.
“We are planning a number of initiatives to promote the availability of superfast and ultrafast broadband in the coming months, including support to reduce the cost of providing connectivity for service providers , targeting ways to increase the demand for and supporting businesses to access advanced data services,” he said.
The superfast broadband services delivered by the Fastershire project will suit many companies on Skylon Park.
More advanced ultrafast broadband services will be the focus of announcements from Fastershire and the Enterprise Zone within the coming months.
Councillor Graham Powell, Herefordshire Council cabinet member for Education and Infrastructure said he was “delighted” to see the first fibre cabinets go live on the enterprise zone.
“We are also helping rural businesses make sense of their broadband needs, and assisting them to exploit the opportunities that faster broadband offers through our CREATE project which will gather pace this year,” he said.
Ian Binks, BT’s Partnership Director for the West Midlands, said the delivery of fibre broadband to the zone is an “exciting milestone” for Fastershire.
“Faster broadband speeds will give businesses on the site the opportunity to use tools that can improve how they work, meaning they could improve productivity while reducing costs. Businesses based in the Enterprise Zone will now have all the technological benefits of a city-based company while being able to enjoy the rural location," he said.