Welcome to the Digital Connectivity webpage, dedicated to providing you with essential information about digital connectivity in North Ayrshire.
We understand the importance of reliable broadband and mobile coverage for both homes and businesses. This page serves as a resource to help you navigate various initiatives, projects, and schemes aimed at improving digital connectivity.
Our purpose is to ensure that every resident and business in North Ayrshire has access to the broadband infrastructure they need. We are actively involved in collaborations with government programs, Mobile Network Operators (MNOs), Alternative Network Operators (Altnets), and digital connectivity technology solution suppliers. Through these partnerships, we strive to create opportunities for investment, enhance coverage, and bridge the digital divide.
This includes information on:
- Universal Service Obligation
- Reaching 100% programme (R100)
- R100 Scottish Broadband Voucher Scheme (R100 SBVS)
- UK Gigabit Broadband Voucher Scheme
- The Community Fibre Partnerships
- Mobile coverage
- Glossary of Terms
- Engaging with us
We are currently working with and supporting several national schemes to ensure that everyone in North Ayrshire has access to the broadband infrastructure they need. If you want to check your current internet speeds you can use an internet speed checker, such as the broadband speed test provided by Which.
Universal Service Obligation
In 2020 the UK Government announced a Universal Service Obligation (USO) for households and businesses that have a download connection speed of lower than 10 megabits per second (Mbps). If this applies to your property, BT are required to deliver a solution up to a maximum cost of £3,400. Possible solutions include a traditional fixed link, or 4G mobile connectivity.
If the cost of providing a faster connection exceeds £3,400 the household or business may have to meet the excess. However, there are other options that may help you cover part of the additional costs.
Find out more about your right to request a decent broadband service.
Reaching 100% programme (R100)
An internet speed of 30Mbps or above is defined as 'superfast broadband'. We are working with the Scottish Government to deliver the Reaching 100% (R100) programme, providing a 30Mbps connection to every premise in Scotland.
The R100 programme will see superfast full-fibre infrastructure deployed across North Ayrshire. The programme has already reached 872 premises and will reach an additional 1,445 properties between 2023 and 2028, with most deployed by 2024. This will give residents and business access to speeds of up to 1000Mbps. You can check if your postcode is included within the R100 plan.
The R100 Scottish Broadband Voucher Scheme ( R100 SBVS)
There will still be a number of properties that will not be connected to full-fibre broadband for a variety of reasons. For these premises, the R100 offers vouchers of up to £5,000 to help premises access superfast broadband. You can check if your property is eligible for a voucher on the R100 website.
These vouchers can be used to subsidise the installation of a superfast full-fibre broadband solution, or an alternative network solution. This could be mobile broadband, fixed wireless broadband or satellite broadband. The vouchers can also be used to part-fund full-fibre infrastructure installation.
Vouchers from R100 SBVS can be combined with those of neighbouring properties, to allow for higher value subsidies, which can allow for community solutions. To explore this further, contact the Digital Engagement team for support on these opportunities. We are currently working on a digital interactive map to help identify voucher clusters which will be available soon on this page.
UK Gigabit Broadband Voucher Scheme
This voucher scheme can be used in conjunction with the R100 SBVS vouchers. They can be accessed by households and businesses in rural areas of the UK with slow broadband speeds (under 24mbps). Under this scheme you can access a voucher through a supplier up to £4,500 per property (household and small or medium-sized business), to purchase a broadband solution. The Gigabit Voucher website contains more information on eligibility.
The Community Fibre Partnerships
If an upgrade isn't planned, then BT Openreach can work with the community to build a customised solution to bring Ultrafast (more than 300 Mbps) Full Fibre broadband to the community. This could be funded using UK Government funding from the Gigabit Broadband Voucher or by the community or a combination of both. This scheme can also be used to upgrade to faster speeds in a community that already has fibre broadband. he Openreach website has more information on how to register your interest in ultrafast fibre broadband.
There are some areas of North Ayrshire that don't get reliable access to 4G mobile reception. We are working with the Shared Rural Network, and the 'Big 4' UK mobile networks (EE, O2, Three and Vodaphone), to push for further coverage of gaps in North Ayrshire. You can check mobile operator coverage in your area on the Ofcom website.
The Scotland 5G Centre’s innovation hub in HALO, Kilmarnock provides a wide range of support and services free to all Scottish-based SME’S and public sector organisations. The hub offers organisations across Ayrshire access to a cutting-edge 5G Mobile Private Network and a secure space to test and develop 5G-enabled products, services, and solutions. With events, workshops and live demonstrations, work with the centre’s technical experts and find out how 5G can transform your business. Find out more on the Scotland 5G Centre website and express your interest in visiting the hub.
Glossary of Terms
For a better understanding, please read the Digital Connectivity Glossary of Terms (PDF, 108kb).
Engage with Us: Collaborate for Enhanced Digital Connectivity
We believe that achieving enhanced digital connectivity requires collaboration and partnership. We invite residents, businesses, Mobile Network Operators (MNOs), Alternative Network Operators (Altnets), and digital connectivity technology solution suppliers to join us in our mission to create a thriving digital ecosystem in North Ayrshire. By working together, we can drive innovation, expand access to high-speed internet, and unlock the full potential of our community.
Whether you have ideas, expertise, or resources to contribute, we welcome your active involvement. We are here to support you and facilitate collaboration. Email our Digital Engagement Team with your inquiries, partnership proposals, or to explore opportunities to improve digital connectivity in North Ayrshire.
Together, let's shape the future of digital connectivity and empower our community with seamless access to the digital world.
Digital Connectivity Enquiry Form
Our customer digital connectivity enquiry form serves as a vital link for addressing your digital connectivity queries or concerns.
We ask you to fill in the details to enable us to better understand and address your specific situation. While our capacity for direct assistance may be limited, we are committed to guiding you towards the most suitable resources or support available.
Please be assured that your information will be handled with the utmost confidentiality and used solely for the purpose of resolving your connectivity issues.