North MSPís Broadband Concerns

20 March 2009

Peter Peacock, Highlands and Islands Labour regional MSP has spoken of his continuing concern over the nature of broadband provision in parts of the Western Isles.

Mr Peacock said, "The issue of broadband provision in parts of the Western Isles has been a growing feature of my mailbag for some time now.

" There is real concern regarding aspects of the ConCom service, both in terms of quality and reliability.

" I have started a campaign and petition to encourage BT to make the Western Isles a priority in their 21Century Network investment programme which is due to start in coming years.

"I have already received over 200 expressions of concern and will continue to encourage people to be in touch with their concerns.

"People increasingly need high speed and reliable broadband in the modern world.

"In the days of high speed broadband which the cities and big towns enjoy in mainland Scotland the inability to secure the high speed and reliable service in the Islands is not just very frustrating for those affected, it places the Islands at a competitive disadvantage.

"I will be meeting soon with the Council and am seeking meetings with BT and HIE to seek their support to persuade the powers that be to change the habits of a lifetime and invest in the Islands first, not last."

Mr Peacock added, "With strong community support we increase the chances of persuading BT and government to accelerate investment.

"I am under no illusions that this will be easy, but I intend to stand up for the interests of the Islands.

"I hope many others will join the cause and support the efforts to improve broadband for the future."




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