Sheffield MP reveals region is stuck in broadband slow lane

Louise Haigh
Louise Haigh
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YORKSHIRE iS stuck in the slow lane on broadband speeds, according to research by a Sheffield MP.

Figures compiled by Sheffield Heeley MP Louise Haigh show Yorkshire has the lowest download speed of any English region.

The average download speed in Yorkshire and the Humber is 34.6 megabits per second (Mbps) compared to a UK average of 37.8 and a high of 40.6 in the South East.

At constituency level, Penistone and Stocksbridge has the lowest average speed at 19.2 Mbps

The Government has set out plans to give consumers a legal right to demand faster broadband.

A proposed “universal service obligation” would set a minimum speed of 10 Mbps by 2020.

But Ms Haigh, Labour’s Shadow Digital Economy Minister is campaigning for the minimum to be much higher and this week the Lords passed an amendment to Government legislation which would raise the standard to 30 mbps.

Ms Haigh said: “In Yorkshire our major cities, towns, swathes of our rural communities and thousands of small businesses are being left in the broadband slow-lane.

“The speed the Government want to guarantee barely amounts to basic broadband and will feel like a relic of a bygone age by the time it has been delivered.

“With 42 per cent of small businesses complaining about internet connectivity it’s time the Government got a grip.

“They deserve better than the second-best, out of date basic broadband the Government want them to put up with.

“And with evidence showing superfast will help fire-up the economy,

“It’s time this Government’s ambitions matched those of millions of consumers and small businesses.

“The UK can’t afford to stay at the back of the queue. It is time everyone benefitted from superfast.”

The data compiled by Ms Haigh shows broadband with download speeds of 30 Mbps or more is available to 84 per cent of homes and businesses in Yorkshire compared to 88 per cent nationally and 93 per cent in London.

Just 27 per cent of properties in the Hull East constituency can access 30 Mbps broadband, the fourth worst constituency in the country.

In parts of Leeds, high speed broadband is available to 98 per cent of homes and businesses.