Galloway community councillors call for public broadband action header image

Residents of Galloway must take action and demonstrate demand for improved broadband if connections in the area are to be improved.

This is according to Whithorn Community Council, which discussed the issue at its monthly meeting last week, the Galloway Gazette reports. 

The councillors agreed slow and unreliable broadband is a problem all of the communities in the region have in common, but so far only four per cent of the population have registered their interest in receiving better connections on the South of Scotland Broadband website. 

Without great evidence of public demand, the council are concerned they will be overlooked by the Scottish government's project to improve internet access in the country. 

If you live in the Whithorn area and are worried there may not be enough public support for better connections, satellite broadband is a viable option. 

This technology is cable of providing high speeds of up to 20 Mbps and is not shared with other households, meaning the issue of public demand is irrelevant. Furthermore, it is available immediately. 

The broadband situation on Whithorn is not unique, as many rural areas across the entire UK are currently struggling with slow and unreliable connections. 

Last week, this issue was highlighted by the organisation Action With Communities in Rural England (ACRE). It criticised the government's Rural Broadband Programme and claimed countryside communities are still receiving a "raw deal".

The organisation said a major part of the problem is the lack of clear information regarding which areas stand to receive an improved service and those that do not.

ACRE chief executive Janice Banks commented: "The information provided by some councils is so limited and inconsistent it is impossible for people to tell whether their homes and businesses are included or not."

"This confusion ties the hands of innovative communities who want to come up with their own broadband solutions. No one will invest in a plan that could be overtaken by the BT rollout," Ms Banks added.