OVER half of all properties in Barrow now have gigabit speed broadband.

The number of properties in Barrow with gigabit broadband has increased from zero per cent in March 2019 to 56 per cent in March 2024, according to statistics from Think Broadband.

Gigabit-capable broadband means download speeds of at least 1 gigabit-per-second (1 Gbps or 1,000 megabits per second, Mbps). A 1 Gbps download speed would allow a high-definition film to be downloaded in under 1 minute, the government website says.

MP for Barrow and Furness Simon Fell said: “It’s very good to see that over 56% of premises across Barrow & Furness now have access to gigabit broadband – especially considering none had access just a few years ago in 2019.

“The Government’s ambition is for nationwide gigabit coverage by the end of 2030 and I am playing my part in trying to speed up that delivery in rural areas as the Government’s Rural Connectivity Champion.

“Gigabit providers continue to connect more premises in Furness daily, with Fibrus rolling out into rural areas, Voneus starting on Walney, and providers such as YouFibre and Openreach increasing access elsewhere.  There’s lots more to do, and I will continue to fight for improved rural connectivity for Furness in discussions with Ministers.”

Westmorland and Furness cabinet member for highways, assets and ICT councillor Peter Thornton spoke of the importance of gigabit broadband which he labelled ‘future-proof’.

Cllr Thornton said: “If you’re going to attract a highly skilled workforce you need a high-speed modern broadband system.”