Banff and Buchan MP David Duguid has welcomed a £1billion deal to extend mobile phone coverage in rural areas.
The UK Government has announced it is investing £500m, along with £530m from the main mobile network operators, to provide high quality 4G coverage for 95% of the UK’s land mass.
The plans involve four operators – EE, O2, Three and Vodafone – joining forces as part of a new organisation to deliver a ‘Shared Rural Network’.
This will help extend coverage to an additional 280,000 premises and for people in vehicles in an additional 16,000km of British roads.
The mobile operators will work together to upgrade existing networks, share infrastructure and build new sites with government-funded masts to target areas that currently have no coverage.
The biggest improvements will be in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Mr Duguid said
This is very welcome news and something that I have been campaigning for since I was first elected.
Improving digital infrastructure – for both mobile phone and broadband coverage – was one of my key pledges in last year’s general election campaign.
This announcement is another example of this Conservative government working to improve the lives of those living in rural areas and making sure that no part of the UK is left behind.
it will go a long way to ending the digital divide and come as a relief to those who are frustrated with mobile ‘dead’ zones around Banff and Buchan.