Gigabit Broadband Voucher Scheme logo

The Rural Gigabit Voucher Scheme is the next wave of the Government’s Gigabit Broadband Voucher Scheme – to help home and businesses in rural areas install a gigabit-capable* full fibre connection to their premises when part of a group project.

The demand-led scheme was launched in May 2019, to support connections for groups of SMEs and homes in rural areas, as part of the £200m Rural Gigabit Connectivity (RGC) programme remains open for new applications until 31 March 2021 (or until the funding runs out).

Rural premises with broadband speeds of less than 100Mbps can use vouchers worth up to £3,500 for each small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs), and up to £1,500 per residential premise to support the cost of installing new gigabit-capable connections that more than double their broadband speeds.

Group projects are when two or more residents and/or SMEs get together to combine their vouchers towards the shared cost of installation. (Single connections are not eligible for additional funding). Government guidance for community groups can be found here and you may be interested in forming a Community Fibre Partnership.

*Gigabit-capable means that the connection can handle speeds of 1,000 Megabits per second but users only sign up to speeds they can afford. As demand increases, users can choose the option to pay for more speed as required

Find out more

Find out more about the Rural Gigabit Voucher Scheme at gigabitvoucher.culture.gov.uk/rural/ and check if you are eligible for a Rural Gigabit Voucher on the Gigabit Voucher postcode search. If you meet the rurality criteria for a Rural Gigabit Voucher this will list active suppliers in your area.

Read about the first Cambridgeshire group to use the Rural Gigabit Vouchers to secure full fibre broadband as part of a Community Fibre Partnership with Openreach.

As this is a new scheme, we would be interested to hear from groups planning to apply. If you have any queries regarding this scheme please contact us at contact@connectingcambridgeshire.co.uk

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How do I find out if I am eligible for the Rural Gigabit Voucher Scheme

    Rural premises with broadband speeds of less than 100Mbps can use vouchers worth up to £3,500 for each small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs), and up to £1,500 per residential premise to support the cost of installing new gigabit-capable connections.

    To find out if your premises is likely to be eligible for the rural gigabit voucher, look up your postcode checker in the Gigabit Broadband Voucher Postcode Checker. This will inform you whether your postcode area meets the rurality criteria, it will also show a list of suppliers active in the area.

  • I would like to apply as a community group but I'm not sure where to begin. Is there any advise on what to do before approaching a supplier?

    Urban and rural communities have successfully improved full fibre broadband connectivity in their area by combining their Gigabit Broadband vouchers to create community schemes with their broadband suppliers.

    The simplest way to create a community scheme is to approach a registered national or local broadband supplier directly and talk to them about the community’s need for a new full fibre broadband service. If a supplier considers your community appropriate for this approach, it can be a simple, cost-effective way to improve your local broadband.

    There is also a government guidance for community-led broadband schemes at www.gov.uk/government/publications/community-led-broadband-schemes/guidance#before-you-start-forming-a-community-group-and-deciding-on-the-best-solution