Further Borough Council Cash Boost for Chipping Broadband

Published Wednesday, 09 May 2018

A Community broadband scheme has received a further £8,000 cash boost from Ribble Valley Borough Council.

The council helped CHAIN: Chipping Area Internet Network install a broadband hub at Chipping Village Hall last year with £9,700 from its Voluntary Organisations Fund.

The scheme has already resulted in 20 village homes being connected to ultrafast broadband.

Now up to 180 more homes could be connected thanks to an additional £8,000 from the borough council for the installation of further broadband fibre in the village.

A recent open day at Chipping Village Hall demonstrated broadband speeds of 950Mbps, 40 times faster than average.

Access to adequate broadband remains a big challenge for rural businesses and communities. Lack of technological capacity can have a significant economic and social impact, and Ribble Valley is riddled with ‘not-spots’, where there is no mobile phone signal.

Chipping councillor Simon Hore said: “The internet is an essential part of everyday life, yet the task of connecting rural residents and businesses is much greater, due to lower population densities and geography, which makes the commercial case for investment more challenging.

“The CHAIN project has been made possible thanks to the hard work of volunteers and the teams who laid fibre ducting to people’s homes.

“This additional council support will enable us to lay further fibre and bring ultrafast broadband to even more village homes.”

Chipping residents and community groups have invested over £120,000 in the broadband project by buying shares or making a loan. Shares benefit from 30 per cent tax relief under HMRC Enterprise Investment Scheme rules and fixed five-year loans currently attract interest at four per cent.

Further information on investing in the project is available at b4rn.org.uk.

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