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Enjoying the internet every day!

June is retired and lives in a rural West Herefordshire and attended a free ‘Introduction to the Internet’ course provided by Fastershire. Before attending the series of seven training sessions, June was very much a beginner and didn’t own a computer or tablet.

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Five communities in Herefordshire are first to benefit from multi-million pound 'Fastershire' project

3rd March, 2013

Work has started in the first Herefordshire communities to benefit from the ambitious, multi-million pound project to roll-out faster broadband available throughout the county, BT and Herefordshire Council announced today.

Engineers are now planning and building the new fibre network in Much Marcle, Ross on Wye, Symonds Yat, Upton Bishop, and St Weonards.

Around 10,000 homes and businesses will have access to faster broadband once the new network is complete in these towns and villages, with the first customers expected to be connected during the autumn.

The newly named ‘Fastershire' project will involve hundreds of engineers working for BT's local network business Openreach, laying 2,500 kilometres of optical fibre cable and installing around 800 new fibre broadband cabinets throughout the Herefordshire and Gloucestershire project area.

The deal between the two councils and BT should enable around 90 per cent of homes and businesses to have access to fibre broadband by the end of 2016. The councils' ultimate target is to provide access to broadband speeds of 24 megabits per second (Mbps) or above for all who need it by 2018 with speeds of up to 80Mbps being typical. Small businesses will also have access to speeds of up to 330Mbps through BT's fibre on demand service which starts to become available during this spring.

In addition, the £56.6 million project intends to address those premises across both counties receiving a connection of less than 2Mbps by aiming to ensure all areas receive that speed as a minimum by the end of 2016.

Councillor Graham Powell, Cabinet Member for Education and Infrastructure, Herefordshire Council, said: "It's great to see this project getting off the ground by announcing the first communities that will benefit from faster broadband in Herefordshire.

"This is the first step on our journey to build a network for the future by investing in technology that will future proof our county. The internet is such a huge part of everyday lives and this new network will transform the county into a digitally enabled place to live and work."

It is estimated that engineers will complete more than a million man hours of work planning and building the network in both counties during the lifetime of the project.

Bill Murphy, BT's managing director for Next Generation Access, said: of BT, said: "We have been working hard to get us to where we are today. This is an exciting time for Herefordshire and the beginning of a journey that will see the communications landscape completely transformed.

"This ambitious project will boost the productivity of local businesses and help to attract a more diverse range of high-growth companies to the area. It will play a major role in creating greater prosperity for the county."

Openreach, BT's local network division, will install the fibre network which will be open to all communications providers on an equivalent basis. Households and businesses in Herefordshire and Gloucestershire will therefore benefit from a highly competitive market, bringing greater choice and affordable prices from the service provider of their choice.

It will also boost the competitiveness of local businesses, helping them to find new customers and operate more efficiently, whilst opening up a host of new learning and development opportunities for households.

Fibre broadband benefits include users being able to run multiple bandwidth-hungry applications at the same time and sending and receiving large amounts of data much more quickly and efficiently.

Computer processing and storage of files will also become more sophisticated and secure using ‘cloud computing' technology. There will be faster back-up of computer systems and wider use of high quality videoconferencing within businesses and between them and their customers.


Simultaneous use

With a slow internet connection you can have problems doing more than one thing at a time online. With faster broadband the whole family can be online doing homework, watching iPlayer, keeping in touch with friends on Skype or Facetime and doing the weekly shop all at the same time without any time delay or frozen screen.


Work from home

Working from home can now be as fast and effective as working from the office. This could save you time and money, as well as helping you to achieve a better work life balance. With faster broadband you could even consider setting up your own business from home as you would have the world class connectivity that could give you the edge.


Keep files in the cloud

Store photos, documents, music and videos online in the cloud rather than on the computer at home. Your files will be kept safe and you can access them anywhere. Fast upstream speeds mean backing up files is done in the blink of an eye.


Stream films & TV shows in seconds

With faster broadband you can download the latest blockbuster before the kettle has boiled or watch your favourite TV show online instantly.


Take an online learning course

With faster broadband you can study online with flexible hours and video tutorials that work immediately.


Maintain independence

New telecare services mean that people who are unwell, have a disability or older people can stay safe and independent at home.

Stream films & TV shows in seconds

Did you know that you can now access a whole host of council services and information online, such as reporting a pothole, paying your council tax, finding out when your rubbish or recycling will be collected and checking library opening times?

Visit: Do it online in Herefordshire Visit: Do it online in Gloucestershire

Home Stories



Enjoying the internet every day!

June is retired and lives in a rural West Herefordshire and attended a free ‘Introduction to the Internet’ course provided by Fastershire. Before attending the series of seven training sessions, June was very much a beginner and didn’t own a computer or tablet.

Read Full Story

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Internet Training

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Grant funding to help community organisations, groups and clubs in Herefordshire

Local community organisations, groups, clubs and other not-for-profit organisations in Herefordshire can apply for up to £2,500 funding to arrange internet support and training so that local people can make the most of the benefits of going online.

Click here for further information and an application form or email go-online@fastershire.com

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Free 'Introduction to the Internet' sessions for communities in Herefordshire

Do you know of a group or club in your community in Herefordshire who would like to find out more about using the internet and the benefits of going online? Fastershire can arrange for a tutor to bring laptops and tablets to the group’s usual meeting place, or another venue with internet access, to demonstrate how to send emails, search for information about the local area, or shop or pay bills online, and then support them to ‘have a go’ themselves. To find out more please email go-online@fastershire.com. These free sessions could lead to a longer course for those who are interested in developing their skills at going online.

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Online Training Resources

Learn My Way (www.learnmyway.com) is a website of free online courses for beginners, helping you to develop digital skills to make the most of the online world.  It's also got courses and resources to help you teach others basic computer skills - including a 'How to be a Digital Champion' course.  

We also have a whole host of training guides here that you can download for your own learning or to use when training someone else.

Computer Training in Herefordshire

There are many organisations across Herefordshire who regularly offer computer courses and support for beginners. Information about just some of the training currently offered available here.

If you would like to be contacted about beginners’ computer courses offered by organisations in Herefordshire please register here and we will send you details when they notify us that more have been arranged.

Details of beginners' computer courses offered by Adult Education in Gloucestershire are here.

Where to buy

Here's a list of home broadband providers who offer packages for homes connected by Fibre to the Cabinet (FTTC) or Fibre to the Premises (FTTP), with links to their web sites, so you can find out if they're up and running where you live.

Click here to view FTTP providers >

Fibre to the Cabinet (FTTC) Providers

Fibre to the premises (FTTP) Providers

Fibre to the premises (FTTP) is one of the world's most cutting edge types of fibre broadband with blistering speeds of up to 330Mbps and 1000Mbps.

If you get enabled with FTTP, you can order it through one of the following Service Providers.

We'll update this page as more ISPs start to offer FTTP.

Gigaclear Providers

FasterFarmers, Intermediate Excel Spreadsheet Course (Herefordshire)

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Location: Hereford YFC, Tillington Road, Hereford, HR4 9QJ

Date: Monday 4th December 2017

Time: 10:00-15:00

Intermediate Excel Spreadsheet Course (Herefordshire)

Free intermediate Excel spreadsheet course with John P Legge Computer Services Limited and provided by Herefordshire Rural Hub and FasterFamers for farming businesses in Herefordshire.
Course content:
  • Introduction to new 2013 features in Excel
  • Sorting and Custom Lists. Advanced sorting.
  • Subtotalling using command button.
  • Conditional formatting, remove duplicates
  • Absolute References in formulas. Named cells and Ranges.
  • Formula auditing
  • Group sheet selection.
  • Multi File linking and consolidation
  • Using Mathematical Functions
  • Locking and hiding information
  • Using Internet for google searches and online help
Please bring your own laptop with Microsoft Excel on it (ideally version 2013 or if not 2016). If you do not have a laptop and need to borrow one for the course, please let us know when you book your place.
To book your place please contact Herefordshire Rural Hub, tel: 01432 353465 or email: bookings@herefordshireruralhub.co.uk.

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Hereford YFC, Tillington Road, Hereford, HR4 9QJ

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96,516 Fast homes
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702 Kms of
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99 exchange areas
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407 cabinets
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Faster broadband is being rolled out across Herefordshire and Gloucestershire between now but it is not possible to flick a switch to make every area go live on the same day and some areas will go live before this. Register your interest today and we will keep you in the loop about developments in your fibre broadband status.