|4 January 2016|

More than half a million Scottish homes and businesses can now connect to high-speed broadband.

The engineering milestone was passed as a new fibre cabinet in Gretna Green became the latest in the £410 million project to go live through the Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband programme – meaning the planned nationwide roll-out is now two thirds complete, with two years to go.

More than 2,200 new fibre street cabinets have been built, with the most northern serving 80 homes in Bod of Gremista, Shetland and the most southern covering 250 premises in Isle of Whithorn, Dumfries & Galloway. Openreach engineers have laid more than 5000KM of fibre cable which, laid end to end, would reach from Glasgow to New York.

Scotland’s infrastructure secretary Keith Brown marked the landmark at Gretna’s Famous Blacksmith Shop and restaurant, a wedding business already benefitting from fibre broadband.

He said: “The start of 2016 marks a real high point in our progress towards ensuring world-class digital connectivity for Scotland by 2020. Our fibre infrastructure is growing rapidly and on average each week the programme reaches another 7,000 premises.

“Today’s milestone is fantastic news for the 500,000 households and businesses across Scotland which would simply not have seen the benefits of high speed, high quality digital connectivity without the Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband programme. It is among the most ambitious broadband infrastructure projects ever undertaken.”