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07.04.06
actnow welcomes new era of ultra-fast broadband

actnow, the Objective One project that is led by Cornwall Enterprise and has spearheaded the development of broadband amongst businesses in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, has welcomed BT's launch today of a new ultra-fast consumer broadband service.

The ultra-fast service is capable of delivering download speeds of up to 8MB – which is up to four times faster than current speeds offered by BT. The service is available at no extra cost. Ian Livingston, CEO of BT Retail, said "This new service delivers the complete package – speeds of up to 8MB matched by our best ever security features. It is set to take the broadband experience to a whole new level for millions of people."

Nigel Ashcroft, Project Director of actnow, says: "This is great news for both businesses and consumers in Cornwall. Broadband is making it possible for businesses to work anytime anywhere and this is especially beneficial in a rural county like Cornwall. The launch of ultra-fast broadband increases the efficiencies which can be enjoyed by businesses and this will help make Cornwall more prosperous."

Carleen Kelemen, Director of the Objective One Partnership, says: "This will transform the use of the Internet for people in Cornwall. It will ensure businesses retain the competitive edge that is vital in a global economy and it will make access to Internet opportunities, such as e learning, even easier for rural communities."

Existing BT broadband customers are being offered a free upgrade to the new service on a first come, first served basis. All existing customers can go to www.bt.com/broadband for information on how to order or register.

BT's line checker at www.bt.com/getbroadband has been updated to show the expected speeds available for individual lines. New customers can order the service at www.bt.com/getbroadband or call 0800 328 9041.

Businesses, self employed people and farms in Cornwall should contact actnow for advice on how to make the most of ultra-fast broadband for their business by calling 0800 800 935 or emailing info@actnowcornwall.co.uk.

For further information please contact Lynn File of actnow lynn@brandinnovation.co.uk.

The Objective One Programme for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly has invested in actnow through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and the European Agricultural Guidance and Guarantee Fund (EAGGF).

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Editor's notes:

The actnow programme is a demand-led initiative to encourage businesses in Cornwall to gain the support they need to move into the broadband economy. It is one of the largest private and public sector partnerships in Cornwall since the Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly were assigned Objective One status by the European Union in 2000.

The £20 million project is part financed by the European Union through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and the European Agricultural Guidance and Guarantee Fund (EAGGF). Other project partners include Cornwall Enterprise, the Objective One Partnership Office, BT, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, the South West of England Regional Development Agency, Cornwall County Council, Business Link Devon and Cornwall and Cornwall College.

The new Up to 8Mb BT Broadband service uses new 'rate-adaptive' ADSL technology to automatically provide and maintain the fastest broadband speed a phone line can physically support. The actual maximum speed depends on a range of factors, including the customer's proximity to their telephone exchange, the quality and length of any telephone extension lines in their home, and the speed of their computer and modem. So, for example, customers living close to their exchange could get the full speed, whilst those living further away might achieve lower maximum speeds.

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Clare Morgan
Media Relations Manager
Objective One Partnership Office
Castle House
Pydar Street
Truro TR1 2UD
Mobile: 07973 813647
Telephone: 01872 223439

cmorgan@cornwall.gov.uk

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