26 July 2002

CLA broadband warning

BRITAINS farmers and rural businesses could suffer if government and BT fails to make high-speed, broadband internet access available widely, warns the Country Land and Business Association.

"One-in-three registered businesses are based in the countryside and their competitiveness increasingly depends on fast internet access. But unless BT makes the ADSL broadband service easily available, rural businesses will lose out," says Charles Trotman, CLA policy adviser. Although BTs ADSL broadband offers connection speeds of up to 50 times faster than a traditional dial up connection, businesses in many rural areas are denied access to this vital service, he adds.

To persuade BT and the government that rural Britain needs this vital new technology farmers weekly and its website farmers weekly interactive have joined forces with the CLA. Our campaign Broadband Rural Britain aims to persuade government to provide incentives to encourage BT and other suppliers to provide affordable broadband in rural communities.

Please support our petition which can be accessed on www.cla.org.uk/campaigns and our website www.fwi.co.uk. You can also find petition forms at CLA regional offices and on the farmers weekly and CLA stands at the CLA Game Fair, which starts today (July 26), at Broadlands, Hants. &#42