Croydon businesses club together to get a superfast Christmas boost

A business park in South Cambridgeshire has received an early Christmas present for their tenants with over £20,000 of funding awarded to install superfast broadband.

The funding will help seven businesses based at Valley Court Offices in Croydon. The small businesses and landlord applied together to pool the funding from the Government’s connection voucher scheme.

Connection vouchers are currently on offer from Connecting Cambridgeshire’s Destination Digital project. The vouchers provide small businesses with funding up to £3000 per company to install superfast broadband.

The Croydon businesses will use the government funding to install their own dedicated broadband leased line, providing speeds of over 30Mbps.

Metechno, based at Valley Court, produce prefabricated bathrooms and their slow connection was making it difficult to transfer large files to their factory in Alfreton. Director Nicola Roope, said: “The additional speed will benefit the transfer of our design files. If the funding wasn’t available, we would have needed to wait until the business was more established.”

Granite 5 is a web design company with 11 members of staff based at Valley Court. They use a range of cloud-based software and encourage their staff to work from home, but their current slow connection was causing problems. Director Jill Davies said: “Through the new connection, we will become more efficient and hopefully that will show in our work and eventually profit margin. In the long term, it will help us to grow the business and enable us to take on more staff. I would recommend it to companies, especially in business parks, as you can club together and share the costs. It would have been too expensive to do this by ourselves.”

The landlord of Valley Court, James Brown encouraged his tenants to apply to the connection voucher scheme and pool the funding together. He said: “The benefits of the connection voucher scheme for Valley Court were obvious. It will be easier for us to attract new tenants with higher speeds and give us the edge on competitors”.

Small businesses pool Government connection vouchers for superfast broadband

Twenty small businesses have received government funding to install superfast broadband to a business centre in Cambridge.

The companies applied together to the government’s connection voucher scheme, which provides funding of between £100-£3000 to install superfast broadband to offices.

Through the new connection, businesses will have speeds of up to 50mbps upload and download.

The connection vouchers scheme is administered locally by Connecting Cambridgeshire, a partnership of local councils in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough delivering superfast broadband across the county.

The small businesses are all based in the same business centre at Sheraton House run by the national company Citibase. Nathan Carpenter, Centre Manager of Citibase Cambridge encouraged his tenants to apply together for the funding and get faster broadband.

He said: “The new connection will help us attract new customers and enable us to respond to existing tenants more quickly and manage the building faster.”

“It was easy to apply, the form was very straightforward and it was easy to get the tenants to agree to the new connection”.

OE Cam, is a management consultancy based in the Citibase building. Pam Wilson, Finance Director says: “All our IT software is based in the Cloud, so good broadband is absolutely essential. The new connection will save us time and improve our efficiency. We currently use mobile phones to speak with clients, but through the new connection we may be able to use Voice over IP (VoIP). This technology is cheaper and more reliable than mobiles.”

Peterborough business sees the light with broadband grant

A Peterborough business that supplies audio and lighting equipment for the events industry is now receiving the fastest broadband speeds available through a government grant.

Pearce Hire is based at Reynolds Industrial Estate in Peterborough. They applied to Destination Digital to get a £3000 government funded connection voucher to install a dedicated fibre line through the Peterborough CORE network. They can now reach 1GB download and upload speeds.

The business were previously using their old copper telephone lines to access the internet. They were getting speeds of just 9mbps download and 1mbps upload. The slow speeds were causing serious problems for the company and its staff and meant that only one person could use the internet at a time. Since the majority of communicating with clients is done through email and the accounts team use online banking, the slow internet created havoc.

They also have a dedicated company website and active social media accounts on Twitter and Facebook. The internet is seen as an essential resource for the business.

Pearce Hire has seen immediate benefits from their new 1GB connection.

Shaun Pearce, Managing Director of Pearce Sound and Lighting said: “We can now all use the internet at the same time and get emails quicker. Most importantly, our staff can now work from home.”

“The cost of having fibre broadband installed was quite costly. The grant helped take the sting out of the overall cost and provide a much improved communication system, essential in today’s market. We are now looking in a VOIP phone system to utilise the benefits to the maximum.”

Superfast broadband proves to be ‘just the ticket’ for Cambridge United.

Connection Vouchers from Connecting Cambridgeshire have helped Cambridge United Football Club to install a new online ticketing system.

Connection Vouchers from Connecting Cambridgeshire have helped Cambridge United Football Club to install a new online ticketing system.

The club applied to Connecting Cambridgeshire’s Destination Digital project for a Government Connection Voucher, of up to £3000, to install superfast broadband.

It might not be immediately obvious why a football club needs superfast Internet access to support its interactive website, which is monitored from the offices at the ground, so that fans can buy tickets and merchandise online.

As the Abbey Stadium, where the U’s play, can hold almost 9,000 fans, being able to ‘score’ tickets online, reduces the number of people queuing at the ground on match day.

Andy Beattie, Cambridge United Football Secretary and Operations Manager, said: “The connection voucher for superfast broadband has enabled our customers to purchase tickets and shop items online thus reducing the amounts of cash collected within the business by 75% and making transactions quicker for our fans.”

Over 900 connection vouchers have been issued in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, improving the connectivity of businesses across the county.