North-east Fife in­ter­net speeds still ‘too slow’, says lo­cal MP

The Courier & Advertiser (Fife Edition) - - NEWS -

In­ter­net providers need to do more to tackle slow broad­band speeds in north-east Fife, the area’s MP has claimed.

Stephen Gethins says slow in­ter­net speeds in ru­ral parts of the re­gion are hin­der­ing lo­cal busi­nesses and plac­ing res­i­den­tial cus­tomers at a dis­ad­van­tage.

He was speak­ing as part of a na­tional cam­paign to en­cour­age im­prove­ments to broad­band ca­pa­bil­ity through­out the UK, with Mr Gethins say­ing the clo­sure of high street banks was high­light­ing the need for bet­ter con­nec­tiv­ity.

He said: “It is clear that broad­band speeds are far too slow here and that’s bad for con­sumers, es­pe­cially for those work­ing from home or peo­ple re­quir­ing in­ter­net ac­cess for on­line bank­ing, for ex­am­ple.

“I know from my own ex­pe­ri­ence and speak­ing to con­stituents that some ar­eas of north-east Fife, such as the East Neuk, are par­tic­u­larly badly af­fected and this must change.”

A sur­vey by Which? has shown that nine out of 10 peo­ple re­gard their home broad­band con­nec­tion as es­sen­tial to ev­ery­day life.

How­ever, re­search shows 59% of peo­ple have ex­pe­ri­enced some kind of prob­lem with their home con­nec­tion, in­clud­ing poor con­nec­tion, dropouts and slow speeds.

Speeds in north-east Fife are shown to be well be­low the na­tional av­er­age of 17Mbps, at just 14.3Mbps.

Fig­ures by Which? go on to show that the bot­tom 25th per­centile in north-east Fife is re­ceiv­ing speeds of less than 6.5Mbps.

The con­sumer group has re­cently launched its Fix Bad Broad­band cam­paign, an ini­tia­tive backed by Mr Gethins.

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