Progress on Hatherden Broadband
4 Aug 2006
BT broadband a step closer for Hatherden and Wildhern residents

Residents of Hatherden and Wildhern today (4th August) moved a step closer to having the opportunity to obtain broadband through their existing BT phone line. This follows an announcement by Hampshire County Council to terminate with immediate effect its contract with Village Internet Broadband Limited, and reopens the way to further discussions with BT. Subject to contracts being signed, the last phone exchange in Hampshire to receive broadband should soon be upgraded, giving residents the reliability and connection speed BT broadband is capable of offering – something they have long been waiting for. Once a contract is signed, BT typically takes around three months to enable an exchange.

Village Internet Broadband Limited was appointed in 2005 to provide a wireless internet solution to Hatherden and Wildhern. Following a string of technical difficulties that has prevented the company from providing a sustainable and reliable service to residents, the council has taken the decision to approach BT, and has agreed to pay for the upgrading of the exchange. VIB Ltd is still able to provide its broadband service and existing customers should not be affected by the council’s decision.

Members of the parish’s broadband working party are delighted with the outcome of the meeting and will maintain their efforts towards ensuring the discussions between HCC with BT are successful, and that the village exchange is broadband-enabled without further delay.

Sir George Young, who has taken a keen interest in the problems facing his constituents who are unable to get a reliable and fast broadband connection, said he was delighted to hear of the progress that has been made. “I am formally writing to the chairman of BT to take this forward. The letter and the reply will be on my website - www.sirgeorgeyoung.org.uk. I hope it won't be too long before the Hatherden exchange joins the 21st century.”

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