Suffolk MPs join petition for better broadband service

MPs deliver a petition for better broadband in rural areas to 11 Downing Street. ANL-151124-170648001
MPs deliver a petition for better broadband in rural areas to 11 Downing Street. ANL-151124-170648001

More than 100 cross-party MPs and Peers have written an open letter to the Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, urging him to continue investing in fixed and mobile broadband. 

The letter was co-ordinated by the All Party Parliamentary Group for Broadband and Digital Communication, which is co-chaired by MPs Matt Warman and Ian Liddell-Grainger, and follows a recent backbench business debate on the matter.  

The signatories, including the Mayor of London Boris Johnson, former Chief Executive of the Countryside Alliance Simon Hart and several former government ministers, welcomed the Prime Minister’s announcement of a Universal Service Obligation for broadband of at least 10Mbps.

It has however been highlighted that 17 per cent of the UK still does not currently have the option of a superfast broadband connection and some 500,000 households still lack even basic broadband.

South Suffolk MP James Cartlidge, who signed the petition and has campaigned for improved services in the Babergh district, said: “As the MP for South Suffolk one of my central concerns is about the lack of mobile and broadband signal in the rural areas of the constituency.

“The consequences of poor signal are both economic and social so it is absolutely crucial that we address the split between the super connected and those with minimal communicative access.

“I am fully committed to this campaign and thrilled so many of my colleagues have joined the fight.’

St Edmundsbury MP Jo Churchill is another who has backed the petition.