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Friday, May 15, 2020

New law aims to overcome local broadband "not-spots"

People in Clwyd South will benefit from new legislation aimed at connecting businesses and homes in broadband ‘not-spot’ areas.
Local politicians are encouraging their constituents in communities which struggle to get a fast, reliable internet connection to contact BT to check their eligibility for the new Universal Service Obligation for Broadband (USO). ​​
Member of the Senedd Ken Skates said: “There are a number of areas in Clwyd South where people still struggle to get a reliable internet connection. 

"I have met with people in a number of local communities and discussed this at length. It affects their daily lives hugely. People need broadband to run businesses, do online shopping and keep in touch with family and friends, all of which are more crucial now than ever before." ​​
Clwyd South MP Simon Baynes said: “You now have the legal right to request a decent, affordable broadband connection from BT under the new Universal Service Obligation (USO) for Broadband, which is intended to be a safety net for those who currently struggle to get online because they cannot yet access a fast connection. I would urge people in Clwyd South to check whether they are eligible for an upgrade."
According to BT, around 91% of premises in Clwyd South can access to superfast broadband (at least 30Mbps) following a number of programmes such as the Welsh Government Superfast Cymru scheme.

BT is now working with Ofcom and the UK Government so more areas can be better connected. ​​
Ofcom says approximately 4.8% of premises in Clwyd South cannot currently receive a fixed-line broadband connection of at least 10Mbps and could potentially benefit. ​​
However, they may already be able to access decent broadband over an EE 4G mobile signal. 

This Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) service – called BT 4G Hub – is available across most of the constituency, with coverage expected to grow further as BT continues to invest in its 4G network. 

If you live within a 4G coverage area, you will be offered this solution if you inquire about the USO and can’t already get a sufficient broadband service. ​​
Glyn Ceiriog councillor Trevor Bates has discussed the issue with both Mr Skates and Mr Baynes. 

He said: “BT will be writing to all those premises in Clwyd South who Ofcom’s preliminary analysis has shown may be eligible. They will be encouraged to contact BT, who will carry out some basic checks to confirm they can access a free upgraded broadband connection.​"

If you have a broadband speed of less than 10 Mb/s download and 1 Mb/s upload you are advised to contact BT, either online by visiting or by calling 0800783 0223.

For further advice, you can also contact​ (Wrexham Council) or​ (Denbighshire).

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