PEOPLE in South Derbyshire are being urged to come forward with any broadband related problems.
After claims were made that the area was ‘falling behind’ in terms of internet coverage, ‘broadband champions’ for the area have pleaded with people to come forward with their tales of woe in an effort to try and improve the service offered.
The group, run in conjunction with Derbyshire County Council, meets regularly to discuss the issue of problematic web speed, concerns from individuals in certain areas and tries to work on a way of improving the situation.
A spokesman for the scheme said: “The champions’ main responsibility is to raise awareness of broadband and to collect information about broadband availability and internet use.
“We provide information to others and regular updates to the community.
“We take feedback from people, ideas and suggestions as we try and improve broadband in the area.”
This comes after the authority was given the go-ahead to provide more than 16,000 South Derbyshire ‘white areas’ — where speeds are slow or there is no connection — with an improved service thanks to Government investment.
Kevin Parkinson, Derbyshire County Council cabinet member for regeneration, said: “Securing fast and reliable broadband for Derbyshire is one of our priorities and approval of our plans is great news.
“Increasingly broadband is at the heart of everything we do, both for work and pleasure, and this will mean a huge step forward for the county as a whole.
“More than 6,000 people helped fight our case by filling in our broadband survey and we’re really grateful to our volunteer Broadband Champions who are doing great work in their communities.”
The council is hoping to secure more funding to pay for Digital Derbyshire and is urging people to back the campaign by visiting www.derbyshire.gov.uk/digitalderbyshire, or by calling 0845 605 8058.
Digital Derbyshire aims to deliver broadband speeds in excess of 24 megabytes per second across 90 per cent of the county and 2Mbps to the remainder by 2015.
To contact the Broadband Champion in your area email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01629 538343 or 01629 538243 or visit www.derbyshire.gov.uk