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Cumbrian town with UK's third worst broadband speeds gets 4G coverage

Thursday, March 24th 2016 by Ellen Branagh

The Cumbrian town of Ulverston has become the 800th community to get 4G mobile coverage from Vodafone, the operator has announced.

Vodafone’s announcement comes just weeks after data from Cable.co.uk suggested that Ulverston was among the five places in the UK with the slowest average broadband speeds.

The arrival of 4G, which comes alongside improvements to Vodafone’s 3G network in the town, is hoped to benefit both consumers and local businesses.

Commenting on the arrival of 4G, Ulverston’s local MP John Woodcock, said people had struggled with poor connectivity for too long.

Mr Woodcock, MP for Barrow and Furness, said: “People across Furness have had to put up with poor connectivity and coverage for too long, so it is great news that Vodafone is bringing 4G to Ulverston.

“It is so important that local families and businesses have good mobile internet services and this announcement is a real step in the right direction.”

Jorge Fernandes, chief technology officer for Vodafone UK, added: “It is great news that Ulverston has become our 800th 4G community.

“The arrival of 4G will bring faster internet speeds to customers whilst our overall network improvements in the town and across the area will ensure our customers enjoy stronger outdoor and indoor coverage.

“Local businesses will also be able to react faster to the needs of customers and introduce remote working practices for staff which can help reduce costs and increase productivity.”

Remote rural communities

Improvements to Vodafone’s mobile coverage in Ulverston are part of £2bn the operator is spending on its network and services in the UK.

Its Rural Open Sure Signal (ROSS) programme is also taking 3G coverage to remote rural communities, including several in Cumbria.

Earlier this month, Cable.co.uk’s report on the places with the UK’s slowest and fastest broadband speeds, based on data from speed tests submitted over the past 12 months, inspired people across the country to speak out about their broadband experiences.

According to the data, Miserden in Gloucestershire recorded the slowest average speeds, at 1.3Mbps, while Rickmansworth, in Hertfordshire, was the place with the fastest average speed at 77.17Mbps.

Responding to coverage, BT suggested the figures did not give an "entirely accurate picture", because it said fibre broadband is "widely available" to two of the slowest areas identified.

It claimed the report was either based on out-of-date information, or on the speeds people chose to buy rather than the maximum speeds available to them.

Image courtesy of Peter Trimming.

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