Government reveals £95m fibre broadband boost

The government has revealed £95m worth of funding for a number of full-fibre broadband projects across the UK.

13 different areas across the country will share the money in order to ensure homes and businesses are able to benefit from fast and reliable broadband connections.

The successful bidders include projects in London, Manchester (which with £22.3m is the biggest winner) and Belfast, with hospitals, schools and emergency response organisations among those benefiting from the funding.


The news was revealed in yesterday's Spring Statement, and is the first part of the £190m Challenge Fund revealed in last year's Autumn Budget, which aims to roll out full-fibre broadband across the UK.

Chancellor Philip Hammond also used his speech to assert the government's commitment to 5G, with £25m from the National Productivity Investment Fund (NPIF) being put aside for use with a series of 5G testbeds. 

Bids for the next wave of Challenge Fund investment will open in the Summer, as part of the government's attempt to improve the UK's whole infrastructure. Although 95 percent of UK homes and businesses can get superfast broadband today, only three percent have access to gigabit-capable full fibre infrastructure.

The ufll list of the 13 successful bidders includes Armagh City, (including Banbridge & Craigavon), Belfast, Blackpool, Cambridgeshire, Cardiff, Coventry (including Solihull & Warwickshire), The Highlands, London, Manchester, Mid Sussex, North Yorkshire, Portsmouth, and Wolverhampton.

Mike Moore
Deputy Editor, TechRadar Pro

Mike Moore is Deputy Editor at TechRadar Pro. He has worked as a B2B and B2C tech journalist for nearly a decade, including at one of the UK's leading national newspapers and fellow Future title ITProPortal, and when he's not keeping track of all the latest enterprise and workplace trends, can most likely be found watching, following or taking part in some kind of sport.