Working to ensure internet access in the capital - Angus Robertson

It has been great to see improvement in internet service provision in Edinburgh in recent years.

As the region aims to become the data capital of Europe, with world-leading research and development and global businesses and organisations operating from the capital, adequate internet access is crucial.

Nonetheless, areas of the Old Town and New Town are still awaiting connection via fibre and alternatives have had to be found, most commonly in the form of cellular provision.

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It is disappointing to see that WeLink, which provide this service ‘will be withdrawing from the UK ISP market’ which will ‘directly affect’ customers in central Edinburgh.

I know this will leave many without their internet access from 5pm on 11 August, if not before and that there is a paucity of viable alternatives.

In addition to this comes the news that CityFibre is pausing its rollout of fibre broadband in Edinburgh. While CityFibre has connected over 100,000 homes thus far, it is unsatisfying to all that we do not have a date for restarting the works to connect the remainder of its contract. I have spoken with CityFibre and will continue to engage so that rollout can resume as fast as possible.

I understand how deeply frustrating this situation is for residents and businesses. It is simply untenable that the centre of Scotland’s capital should not have excellent internet access. I have engaged colleagues in the Scottish Government to explore how we can ensure decent access for Scotland’s capital in haste.

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