CUMBRIA FREE AND FAIRRory is contacting all of Penrith and The Border’s parish councils to encourage them to take full advantage of the Government’s new Gigabit Voucher Scheme (GVS).

The GVS, which was announced by the Chancellor of the Exchequer in his Spring Statement, gives direct financial support to businesses and homeowners for the installation of new future-proofed ultrafast fibre connections. It has a national budget of £67 million and all small businesses, and up to 6 domestic properties per business, are eligible to apply either individually or collectively. Rory, for whom the provision of rural broadband has been a longstanding priority and whose efforts resulted in Cumbria being included in the national rural broadband programme, has taken an active interest in this scheme and is seeking to ensure that the opportunities of GVS are fully grasped across Penrith and The Border.

Since his election in 2010, Rory has been Cumbria’s most vocal proponent of better technologies, meeting with many providers and originally overseeing in 2011 the creation of community ‘broadband champions’. Now, in 2018, he is calling on a new generation of broadband champions to come forward.

Commenting on this approach Rory said: “I would love to see the Gigabit Voucher Scheme encourage a new generation of broadband champions who can lead their local efforts to plug the remaining gaps in coverage and ensure that we have the connectivity we deserve. Bringing a decent broadband service to every part of Penrith and The Border is a top priority for me and I will continue to push for further government support for rural broadband wherever possible”.

Anyone wishing to learn more about the GVS, or how to get involved as a broadband champion, should get in touch with Rory directly at [email protected] or by telephoning 01768 484114.

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