Dent, 15 March, 2017
Major milestones have been reached in the rapid spread of hyperfast broadband to remote communities in the west of the Yorkshire Dales National Park.
People in Dent met at the Primary School to celebrate the arrival of a connection to a cabinet sited at the school.
Local volunteers have spent the past 11 months bringing fibre optic cables over the fell from Barbon via a trench dug next to Barbondale Road.
Meanwhile in Chapel le Dale, businesses and households are being connected one-by-one as the network is extended from Masongill, Ireby and Ingleton.
Both projects, owned and run by community benefit society Broadband For The Rural North Ltd (B4RN), have been supported by loans from the Yorkshire Dales National Park’s Sustainable Development Fund.
Dent B4RN has received £11,300, specifically to pay for the cabinet at the Primary School. YDNPA’s Chairman Carl Lis presented a “big cheque” and praised the community.
He said: “This unassuming green cabinet is a symbol of the self-reliance of this community. People in Dent knew that because of their remoteness, they would not be served well by the national broadband infrastructure programme. So, with help of B4RN, they have got on with providing a good connection themselves.
“The National Park Authority is delighted to be able to support this scheme, as well as the Chapel Le Dale project. We know that it is critically important for remote rural communities to have good access to broadband. Businesses need it, while households rely on it to access important services. And because the cables are put underground, there is no impact on the Park’s stunning landscape.”
The Chapel le Dale B4RN project has received £9,950 from the Sustainable Development Fund. The money is going towards the digging-in of the fibre optic cables.
Mr Lis said: “The people behind the Chapel le Dale scheme have had to face a tricky set of problems. Cables are having to be run through some of our most sensitive areas in terms of Sites of Special Scientific Interest and Scheduled Monuments. Consents had to be gained before work could start. Residents of Chapel le Dale have shown they are keen to make the area an attractive place to live, work and visit. Well done to them.”