Forest of Dean to get faster broadband 'within months'

Coleford Clock Tower
Image caption Coleford will be one of the first five communities in the Forest to get faster broadband

Some 15,000 homes and businesses in Gloucestershire are to get faster broadband within six months.

People in the Forest of Dean will be the first to benefit from the multi-million pound 'Fastershire' project which has begun.

BT and Gloucestershire County Council have announced that work has started on building the new fibre network for five communities in the Forest.

They expect the first customers to be connected during the autumn.

'Significant investment'

The five Forest of Dean communities are Cinderford, Coleford, Drybrook, Longhope and Lydbrook.

Last year Gloucestershire and Herefordshire county councils agreed the £56.6m deal with BT to offer high-speed internet to rural parts of both counties.

BT has said that the whole project will involve hundreds of engineers, laying some 2,500 kilometres of optical fibre cable and installing around 800 new fibre broadband cabinets throughout the area.

It should enable 90% of homes and businesses to have access to fibre broadband by the end of 2016.

Cllr Mark Hawthorne, leader of Gloucestershire County Council, said: "We have made this significant investment in the county's broadband infrastructure so that businesses and communities of all sizes can grow.

"This is about improving broadband access for all and I look forward to seeing the first cabinets go live later this year."

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites