7 September 2021
77,000 premises in Wales are not maximising the availability of government grants to access new broadband technology. There have been 1,702 Access Broadband Cymru applications so far in 2021, only 2% of the 79,000 homes and businesses eligible for superfast broadband funding.
A freedom of information request submitted by internet service provider FreeClix, has revealed a lack of awareness of the Access Broadband Cymru scheme available for homes and businesses in Wales. You can see the data in full on this webpage.
In Blaenau Gwent 1,354 properties are without broadband, yet not a single property submitted an application to receive an £800 government grant in 2021. Surprisingly Cardiff has the lowest ratio of applications, with only 0.25% of properties without broadband applying for a grant, meaning 2,672 properties are still eligible to apply.
Monmouthshire saw the highest percentage of properties without superfast broadband receive grant funding, almost 8%. Of the submitted applications 88% were successful.
The data reveals how likely it is that businesses and homes are to be accepted for the £800 grant, showing that on average 85% of applications are accepted.
• Technology innovators such as FreeClix believe that there is a lack of awareness of the support available for businesses and homes.
• Mobile technology could provide relevant homes and businesses a download speed of over 30Mbps to 99% of properties.
• Only 2.15% of premises without broadband in Wales have applied for funding in 2021.
• There are 77,000 premises in Wales that have not yet applied for funding they are eligible to receive.
• Despite 85% of Access Broadband Cymru applications being accepted in 2021, there are still several regions in Wales who are not submitting applications.
• Powys has the highest number of properties without superfast broadband.
FreeClix Managing Director Peter Freeman believes “the reason for the lack of funding applications is a lack of awareness surrounding the grants for people to utilise the technology that’s available without paying a high price.” Pete adds “SimRush has been delivering superfast broadband speeds for five years in Wales, the 77,000 homes without broadband need to realise that the technology is there to deliver 100Mbps download speeds, even if you live in a rural location. The launch of 5G now means cities such as Cardiff can get even faster speeds. There really are no excuses.”
Who Is Eligible for the Access Broadband Cymru Grants?
The scheme is open to individuals, businesses and third sector premises in Wales where the broadband connection (if available) cannot deliver a step change in service provision of at least twice the current download speed. The proposed new service must ensure a minimum download speed of at least 10Mbps. A connection resulting in a download speed of lower than 10Mbps is not be supported by the scheme.
It is important you check your current download speed by completing a speedtest to ensure the required step change can be delivered.
Living or working in Wales and struggling to get an internet connection?
Contact FreeClix who provide a free desktop survey to tell you exactly what speeds you are likely to achieve and how to apply for the scheme.
About FreeClix Ltd.
FreeClix Ltd based in Norfolk developed the wireless broadband product SimRush, which uses 4G and 5G technology to connect businesses to the internet even when they don’t have a phone line. SimRush is unlike a standard 4G or 5G router as the hardware is programmed to receive the best signal from the nearest data mast. This means they have regularly achieved download speeds of 100Mbps for businesses in Wales, even when they are located in remote locations.