D2N2 has just agreed the sum of £2.19 million for Derbyshire's Digital Derbyshire scheme at its latest Infrastructure and Investment Board (IIB) meeting.
The county is improving access to fibre optic-based broadband in line with a national push by Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) - part of the Department for Culture, Media and Sport - which last week announced its UK rollout had topped more than three million homes and businesses (338,709 of which are in the East Midlands).
By 2017 the Government wants 95% of all UK businesses and homes to have access to fibre broadband with download speeds faster than 24mbps (megabits per second), greater than the mbps usually available via standard telephone lines.
Digital Derbyshire's scheme will run over five years, from 2013-2018 - on completion it's hoped that close to 98% of Derbyshire and Derby premises will have access to faster broadband through the new fibre optic network including more than 10,000 business premises.
The programme is expected to indirectly create hundreds of jobs through the improved communications technology enabling businesses to improve productivity and expand their operations, and the contract work for local firms installing the broadband infrastructure.
D2N2 is a private sector-led Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) of business, local authorities, universities, skills and training providers, and community organisations which works to promote economic growth and jobs creation across Derby, Derbyshire, Nottingham and Nottinghamshire.