Country : Scotland
Balquhidder Community Broadband Community Interest Company is a community based social enterprise based around the villages of Balquhidder and Balquhidder Station. It was formed by the community to solve the problem of poor and non-existent broadband in our area. As the national government schemes were not offering any suitable solutions, the community took the decision that as no one was going to do it for us we would just have to do it ourselves. Ensuring that the community effort would only have to be done once we have delivered a future proof and upgradable FTTP 1 Gbps fibre solution to every property in the community. Using community volunteers to eliminate all labour costs on building the local fibre network reduced the capital investment required to approximately half of the commercial costs for such a build. As well as benefiting from world class broadband the community now owns a considerable infrastructure asset in the form of the local fibre network. Moving forward the project is working through digital inclusion workshops to ensure everyone, young and old, is able to make best use of the transformation broadband speeds being delivered. Using government figures economic uplift for the community could be in the region of £5m and the project is now working on plans to upgrade the village hall to provide facilities for a community and business hub including Village Cinema, Conference, Business, Meeting, Function, and Training facilities and the development of tele-health facilities on the community.