Rt Hon Lord Lilley

    Peter Lilley has welcomed news that industrial areas of Hitchin will receive access to high speed broadband by September this year at the latest following many months of campaigning. This follows confirmation from both Connected Counties and BT that they have moved the upgrade work on the relevant cabinet (Stevenage 123) forward, with work due to be finished by the end of September 2015.

    “I am delighted by this recent progress in the campaign to bring high speed broadband to the industrial areas of Hitchin. It is long overdue and will have a hugely positive impact on the local business community,” said Peter.

    “After I raised the issue, some 35 businesses in Hitchin wrote to me complaining about the poor internet infrastructure in the area. Armed with these letters, I won the backing of Ed Vaizey – the Minister responsible for Communications – for my campaign to bring high speed broadband to the Hitchin Industrial Area. Since then I have been pressing both BT and the County Council to prioritise the industrial areas in their roll out of superfast broadband.

    “The industrial area of Hitchin was originally not due to receive fibre broadband until a much later stage of the programme, but after many calls, meetings and letters we have been able to have the necessary upgrade work brought forward substantially and this latest development is a big step in our efforts to secure this vital service for local businesses.

    “It is extraordinary that high speed broadband has been provided for most of the surrounding residential area but was not given to the industrial estate. At a time when we are trying to rebuild and strengthen British industry, business areas should be given priority in getting access to what is now a vital business asset. This is great news as high speed broadband is essential for businesses in Hertfordshire to be competitive and continue to grow and access customers across the world.”