Borders phone exchanges among latest to get major broadband boost

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THREE telephone exchanges in the Borders are among six in Scotland being given a broadband upgrade in a deal between BT and Holyrood, writes Bob Burgess.

Engineers will complete the work at Lempitlaw, Steele Road and Abbey St Bathans by mid to late April.

The changes will boost broadband speed from the basic 0.5Mbps to speeds of up to 8Mbps.

Scotland’s enterprise minister Jim Mather commented: “We have been working with BT to identify telephone exchanges at, or approaching, their capacity and in need of an upgrade to provide better broadband connections. Twenty seven have already been enhanced and I’m delighted that a further six are set for improvements,”

Brendan Dick of BT said: “The upgrades will help more people get faster broadband speeds from a wider range of service providers and make possible higher bandwidth services like tv over the internet.”

Conservative MSP John Lamont described the announcement as great news and added: “In this day and age, it is crucial that everyone is able to access good quality, high speed broadband services. I have long campaigned for better broadband for our area. I am determined that the Borders should not be left behind.

“No community, regardless of size or population should have to suffer from low quality internet services – especially when it is such a vital tool for communication and for business.”

The other exchanges in the latest group to be improved are at Tummel Bridge, Perthshire; Bargrennan, Kirkudbrightshire and Westerdale in Caithness.