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Dersingham man takes broadband idea to Government

Will Newman promoting new idea for broadband,
Will Newman promoting new idea for broadband,

A West Norfolk businessman says he could have the solution to the challenge of providing superfast broadband in difficult areas to serve.

Will Newman, from Dersingham, has held talks with a Government minister over his technology, which he says can deliver connections nearly 10 times further than current capability.

And his company, Longreach Broadband, has been canvassing businesses in North Lynn to gauge interest there.

Mr Newman ran West Norfolk Community Broadband, which delivered high-speed connections on a network which linked several communities along the West Norfolk coast, between 2003 and 2008.

And he says a chance meeting with a BT engineer showed him the technology he used then is still needed.

Mr Newman says his patented external wi-fi system can deliver broadband connections over a distance of up to 60 kilometres from its source, compared to just seven from current BT installations, and is also cheaper to install than conventional fibre.

He said: “What we’ve got is a gamechanger.”

This week, Mr Newman completed a leaflet drop among businesses on the North Lynn industrial estate to gauge interest from firms there, as he believes the needs of businesses are not being met in a drive to ensure homes are connected first.

A similar project is also being examined in Warwick, while work is also underway to raise funds from investors.

Earlier this year, Mr Newman also met the digital minister Matt Hancock to discuss the technology in a meeting arranged by North West Norfolk MP Sir Henry Bellingham.

Sir Henry said: “He was very interested in what he’s doing and wants to be as supportive as he can.

“It’s a very interesting idea and certainly what we need at the moment.”

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