could your village host vodafone’s mobile trial?

Rory has secured a pledge from the mobile phone company, Vodafone, to locate one of its femto cell trials in Penrith and the Border. Rory has said that “if your village has no mobile phone coverage, this could be the answer to your problems” and is encouraging all constituent villages lacking mobile coverage to get in touch with him to register their interest. Vodafone will install its innovative ‘open femto’ technology in the winning village, providing the community with a clear mobile voice and internet signal. He will be writing to all parish councils in his constituency to solicit expressions of interest from Penrith and the Border’s villages.

Rory said: “Vodafone’s trial is extremely relevant to our area. I’m delighted to have secured their commitment to trial a village right here in Penrith and the Border, which I know has many more mobile signal ‘not-spots’ than ‘hot-spots’. It is great that industry are finally showing that they are taking rural obstacles seriously, responding with imagination and flexibility to our problems, and I am very excited indeed about this opportunity. I encourage all interested villages to contact me through their local parish council clerk, or another village representative, to indicate their interest in taking part in this trial.”

Rory is looking for a village which meets the following criteria:

• A population of no more than 1,000 residents
• Local fixed broadband speeds of not less than 1.5meg
• No existing mobile signal

The topography of the village could also be a factor. Villages that are arranged around a village green or square in shape will be preferred to those that stretch along a street.

If your village has no mobile signal and you think it might meet the criteria outlined above, please get in touch with Rory at [email protected] or in writing at the House of Commons, London SW1A 0AA.

Good luck!

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