North Yorkshire County Council has secured £1m to improve mobile phone coverage in the county.
This funding for the authority’s mobile phone coverage improvement programme comes from the York, North Yorkshire and East Riding Enterprise Partnership’s Local Growth Fund.
County Councillor Don Mackenzie, Executive Member for Access, said: “Improving mobile phone coverage is vital to the economic growth of the county. Without this investment, the competitive edge of our businesses would be affected. Improved coverage will support business growth and tourism, it will help to remove social isolation and will help our young people to build futures within their communities.”
The County Council has recently commissioned an independent survey of the county to identify areas where there is no mobile phone coverage. The findings will be reported shortly, enabling the authority to identify “not spots” where it may be able to invest in new mobile infrastructure.
The County Council is working with Britain’s four major mobile phone operators – EE, Vodaphone, O2 and Three – and this is essential to the success of the programme.
During the past three months, the county has seen improvements in coverage through a combination of new masts and upgrades to 4G in the following areas: Brotton, West Marton/Skipton, Boroughbridge, Easington, Thornton in Lonsdale, Wigglesworth, Appleton Wiske, Hanlith, Appleton le Street, East Ayton, Snainton, Great Ayton, Stokesley Road in Helmsley, Goathland, Hinderwell and Castleton.
Cllr Mackenzie added: “We expect to continue to improve coverage, working together with mobile phone operators, planning departments in district councils and Mobile UK, the industry body representing the operators.”
The programme builds on the County Council’s work to develop the county’s digital infrastructure, including its investment in bringing high-speed broadband access to remote communities. It supports the authority’s Plan for Growth, which sets out an ambition to increase good-quality jobs, improve access to economic opportunities and boost average wages.