Long-suffering residents in the Magheraconluce/Drumlough area are to see their wait for adequate internet speeds to end.
Jonathan Craig MLA and Councillor Luke Poots have praised the introduction of super fast broadband in the area as part of a project between Department of Trade and Investment and BT.
Mr Craig and Mr Poots said: “In the Magheraconluce/Drumlough area this has finally lead to the roll out of super fast broadband in a geographical area that people have either had no broadband or connection speeds as low as 0.25MB/sec. This is a issue which has affected almost 400 homes and premises for the past eight years, and both of us would like to pay tribute to the Mageraconluce Broadband working group that worked tirelessly on this issue for the past six years lobbying all their local elected representatives and insuring that this issue stayed as a priority issue for Stormont to deliver on.”
They continued: “The broadband provision in the area took a huge step forward last year when BlueBand broadband put a new mast in and provided wireless broadband speeds of up to 40MB/sec. To many homes in the Magheraconluce area, this clearly sparred on competition with BT now fitting several new Fiber Cabinets in the Magheraconluce/ Drumlough area providing speeds of up to 80MB/sec.”
The local representatives say that whilst many have seen their broadband speeds increase dramatically in the past few months to a year there are still areas that are being rolled out with at least two of the new Fibre boxes not yet connected by BT. Mr Poots and Mr Craig said: “This is an issue we are continuing to put pressure on BT to deliver on and have a meeting arranged this Thursday between senior BT officials and local residents to try and ascertain delivery dates.”
They added: “We both want to thank Minister Foster and DETI for delivering on this very difficult issue for rural areas of Lagan Valley, an issue which now opens up new opportunities for all in the area.
“It not only gives the opportunity for some to work from home, it allows children to enhance their home work provision from school, now increasingly needing good internet provision.
“One of the other main benefits is that it allows rural business opportunities to flourish putting them on a more even footing with urban businesses giving them the opportunity to grow.”