BT, Virgin Media front-runners for DCMS’s £100m
Who will be in line for the government’s £100m urban broadband handout should be known next month when the department of culture media and sport (DCMS) finalises its criteria.
However, residents of the six cities in addition to London, Edinburgh, Cardiff and Belfast should be getting broadband at 80-100Mbps before 2015, a DCMS spokesman says.
“It is not possible to say in advance of receiving the plans from each of the cities exactly when this will happen in each city,” he told Br0kenTeleph0ne.
He could not say how many homes and businesses would be served. “However, in supporting this initiative, BT and Virgin Media have committed to strengthening their networks in the winning cities and will be offering their broadband services with 80-100 Mbps potential, rather than 24Mbps,” he said.
DCMS has just confirmed that the £100m is in fact new money for broadband.
“The £100m is not coming from the BDUK fund. It is money the chancellor has provided specifically for urban broadband and there will be no impact on the speed or scale of rural broadband rollout,” it said.
It added, “The plans that bidding cities develop will need to be compliant with state aid rules.”