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The Western Isles fared the same as parts of Yorkshire and Dorset and little better according to Stirling said the report.

A Department for Culture, Media and Sport spokesman pointed out the figures did not indicate what broadband is available in the affected areas. Many districts have infrastructure providing superfast broadband speeds of 24Mbps but users have not signed up for an improved service.


The study “shows many people haven’t taken up speeds that are already available to them,” said the UK Government.


Scottish Labour connectivity spokesperson Rhoda Grant said the study was “further proof of unacceptable delays and failure from the SNP.”


She said solutions to the “unequal and unfair distribution” are required “sooner rather than later.”


Fergus Ewing, the Scottish minister responsible for digital communications said without Scottish Government investment there would be no fibre broadband at all in the Western Isles or the north of Scotland.


He said: “The Scottish Government is set to deliver high speed fibre broadband access to at least 95% of premises across Scotland by the end of this year.”


MP Angus MacNeil said: “In order for remote and rural areas to benefit more fully from the installation of fibre cabinets full use must be made of local knowledge in their siting by consulting local communities and their own local engineers.”


Scottish Conservative MSP Donald Cameron said despite the “challenging geographies and sparse populations” rural parts of the country must not be ignored.

The Western Isles has some of the worst broadband speeds in the UK, according to a new study.


Research by consumer group Which ranked the islands sixth from the bottom compared to other council areas.


The Western Isles had 9Mbps compared to a suggested acceptable 10Mbps.


Despite reports in local and national media there is no universal service obligation in place for broadband.  


10Mbps is considered the lowest acceptable standard and the last Conservative government consulted over a proposal making this figure a minimum by 2020 though users would face a rise in bills to pay for the upgrade.  





Study finds poor broadband speeds in Western Isles

29 June 2017