Superfast broadband to connect county

Once current plans are implemented, two-thirds of the county will be able to access the rapid service but, by 2014, 97% of the county will be covered.

BT has been appointed as Lancashire County Council's delivery partner to bring the final third of the county up to speed.

The roll-out will see public sector investment of £32 million and the creation of 25 jobs and 20 apprenticeships. As part of the roll-out, a £3m fund will be established to help small and medium sized businesses get the best out of superfast broadband and an early priority will be to provide superfast broadband to Lancashire's enterprise zones.

Edwin Booth, chairman of the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership, said: ""Superfast broadband has a critical role to play in increasing productivity and innovation across all areas of the economy in Lancashire. We want a thriving economy here in Lancashire and this will help us to achieve it.”

Geoff Driver, leader of Lancashire County Council, said: "Establishing this superfast broadband network will not only open up opportunities for businesses in Lancashire, it will revolutionise the way that people in the county, especially in rural or deprived areas, connect to the wider world."

Public sector funding for the scheme is expected to come from Broadband Delivery UK, thee European Regional Development Fund and Lancashire County Council with commercial funding provided by BT.