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Full fibre broadband connections offer the fastest and most reliable speeds available, and the government is committed to a vision of a full fibre Britain. As part of this commitment in March 2018 we announced our £67m Gigabit Broadband Voucher Scheme.

Gigabit broadband vouchers can be used by small businesses and the local communities around them to contribute to the installation cost of faster connections using gigabit-capable infrastructure. Small to medium sized businesses can claim a voucher worth up to £2,500 and residents can claim a voucher worth £500 as part of a group project.

The scheme is accessible through broadband service providers who have registered to provide connections through the scheme, so if you are a qualifying business or local community group interested in benefiting from a voucher:

Check whether your business/community group is eligible for a voucher - details are on the website. Then check whether there are registered suppliers in your area using the postcode search on the website. You can also talk to your existing supplier to see if they are participating in the scheme, or to encourage them to register.

Vouchers are issued to the supplier and can only be used to offset the cost of installing a gigabit-capable broadband connection to your premises.

Full details about whether you are eligible for a voucher and to connect you to a full fibre broadband supplier, go to: gigabitvoucher.culture.gov.uk

Background of the scheme

The Gigabit Broadband Voucher Scheme is part of the Local Full Fibre Networks programme, which has the strategic objective of increasing full fibre coverage across the UK.

Starting in late 2017, the programme launched the first wave of its programme, designed to test its approach to market stimulation. £10m was allocated to the launch of five pilot projects across the country, including £2m on a market test for the voucher scheme. The national launch of the scheme has been designed to build on the lessons learned from our market test.

How do the vouchers work?

Businesses or residents that are eligible for gigabit vouchers can access the scheme through a supplier.

View a chart which shows the step-by-step process that each voucher recipient will go through to activate their voucher:

What is a gigabit connection?

The UK now has 95% coverage for superfast broadband with speeds of 24 megabits per second or higher. However, most superfast connections still depend on copper telephone wires, which are limited in the speeds they can support. For the fastest and most reliable broadband, capable of delivering gigabit speeds, a full fibre connection is required.

One gigabit is the same as 1,000 megabits – so it’s a big leap forward in connection speeds that could benefit you and your business into the future. Full fibre also supports symmetrical connections – meaning your upload and download speeds can be the same.

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