Slowest download speeds in UK council wards are in Wales

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Seven out of 10 of the council wards with the slowest download speeds are in Wales, figures from the House of Commons library have shown.

Abererch on the Llyn Peninsula in Gwynedd topped the list, with speeds of 2.7Mbps, followed by Llandinam in Powys and Devauden in Monmouthshire.

MP Liz Saville Roberts said half her constituents had download speeds below the government's baseline level.

BT said people needed to upgrade their services to access superfast speeds.

Superfast Cymru means speeds of 24Mbps plus are now available in about nine out of every 10 homes and businesses in Wales, a spokesman said.

The top 10 list ordered by wards and constituency with download speeds in megabits per second is:

  • Abererch, Dwyfor Meirionnydd - 2.7
  • Llandinam, Montgomeryshire - 3.1
  • Devauden, Monmouth - 3.1
  • Trelech, Carmarthen West and South Pembrokeshire - 3.8
  • Bratton Fleming, North Devon - 4.1
  • Yscir, Brecon and Radnorshire - 4.2
  • Llanfihangel Aberbythych, Carmarthen East and Dinefwr - 4.2
  • Beguildy, Brecon and Radnorshire - 4.3
  • Stort Valley, Saffron Walden - 4.3
  • Teme Valley, West Worcestershire - 4.3

Wales also had 13 out of the 20 slowest download speeds.

The UK government's own minimum acceptable download level is 10Mbps, Ms Saville Roberts said.

The Dwyfor Meirionnydd MP said her Gwynedd constituency had slower than average download speeds and worse superfast availability than the UK average.

"It's shocking that out of the 10 worst performing areas for broadband speeds, seven are in Wales," she said.

"Many of my constituents are unable to access what Ofcom recognises as the speed necessary to deliver an 'acceptable user experience', required for basic tasks such as web browsing, streaming and video calling.

"What we need in Wales is parity of access to the country's telecoms infrastructure. I hope the separation of BT from Openreach will signal an end to the monopoly in broadband provision, which has so far failed to meet the specific needs of many rural communities."

Image caption Dwyfor Meirionnydd MP Liz Saville Roberts described the speeds as "shocking"

A BT spokesman said the focus on average download speeds was "disappointing" as Wales had better coverage than any other devolved nations following the roll out of Superfast Cymru.

"What this report does highlight to us is that more families and businesses now need to make the most of this new technology and upgrade their services if they want faster internet speeds," he said.

"For small parts of Wales we appreciate that upgrading isn't currently possible but we continue to work hard to roll out fibre broadband across the country."

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