Rural residents urged to answer questionnaire call

Residents of the Borders’ rural communities are being urged to take part in a questionnaire to improve their broadband.

The Southern Uplands Partnership (SUP) has been commissioned by Community Broadband Scotland, in the first stage, to survey issues and needs in areas not currently served by BT’s Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband programme.

In the second stage, the results will form a public consultation to make the case for better broadband in those areas, including Eskdalemuir, Upper Teviotdale, Borthwick Water, Tweedsmuir, Moffat Water, Glen, Orchard Mains, Traquair, Ettrick, Yarrow, Lilliesleaf, Ashkirk, Midlem, Bedrule, Hassendean and Minto.

The SUP’s Julie Nock explained: “This is a huge problem for many outlying communities and I am collating data in the hope of finding a long-term solution. I need as many survey responses as possible to demonstrate a need for better provision, and to allow us to go a stage further in tendering for a solution.

“Our aim is to collate as much data as possible on your current service, location and desire for a better service, so this can be used to explore the potential of a community-led initiative to deliver superfast broadband. We are aware that many of you have already completed a broadband survey in your community council area, and we will endeavour to include these results. However, it is vital we get up-to-date information.

“The general information will then go out in a public consultation. Once these are accepted, the communities have a number of options and can apply for government funding to install their own infrastructure.

“Please fill out our rural broadband survey at before September 2, or email”