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We must keep the pressure on for faster broadband

Thursday 23rd December 2010 (Andrew Griffiths)

THE CAMPAIGN to bring ‘superfast’ broadband to Burton has reached a major milestone after the tally of people signing up to register for the service topped the 1,000 mark.

A late surge of votes saw the number of people from the town signing up at BT’s Race To Infinity website soar from 828 on Monday to 1,041, or 3.3 per cent of users of the Burton exchange, yesterday.

While Burton has failed to secure enough votes to benefit from the first rollout of high-speed fibre-optic broadband, to be completed by the end of 2012, the ranking means the town will be on the list to receive it in the second phase between 2013 and 2015.

The voting was boosted by a story in Monday’s Mail and a mailshot from Burton MP Andrew Griffiths (pictured), who urged people to carry on voting to ensure the Burton exchange was updated as soon as possible.

He said: “I sent an email to everyone who had registered their email address with me and encouraged them to register. We saw the largest number of people so far signing up in one day, and we’ve passed the magic 1,000 figure which means Burton is now in with a chance.

“The key is for people to keep on signing up to give us the best chance possible of being upgraded.

“I had an email the other day from a businessman who had been thinking about moving to the Eton Park area of Burton but changed his mind because broadband speeds there were so low. It shows the importance of broadband in terms of jobs and our economy. If we can get superfast broadband in Burton it will mean greater prosperity.”

Ian Page, managing director of Burtonbased company @PC, who has been campaigning for people to sign up, also urged those who haven’t voted already to do so before the December 31 deadline.

He said: “It went up by about 180 people on Monday which is absolutely fantastic news. I’d like to thank everyone who has registered and the Burton Mail for highlighting this issue.

“I hope people will keep voting because we need as many people as we can to register, and voting is open to everyone, not just BT users.” Anyone wishing to vote can do so online by visiting , entering their postcode and clicking ‘vote now’.

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