CROSSDYKES Wind Farm developer Muirhall Energy is set to transform areas of rural Dumfries and Galloway by bringing superfast broadband to the area for the first time.
The Lanarkshire-based firm, which owns and operates wind farms throughout the country, has pledged £150,000 towards improving local broadband provision for residents and businesses in Bankshill, Paddockhole and Corrie Common, as well as pupils at Tundergarth Primary School.
Muirhall Energy’s investment will cover installation costs, as well as pay the first six months’ subscription for all customers. The renewables firm has also secured a three-year price freeze, meaning those taking advantage of the broadband will pay 2021 prices through to 2024.
It is expected that a total of 79 properties will initially be able to connect by the end of June, with plans already in place for extending superfast broadband coverage to the wider communities around Crossdykes Wind Farm.
Superfast broadband will allow users to undertake tasks many of us take for granted, such as online education, streaming movies and music, and keeping in touch with family and friends.
The service will be delivered by fellow independent Scottish company, Briskona, who have worked closely with Muirhall to deliver the project.
Jason Morin, Project Manager at Muirhall Energy, said: “Muirhall Energy aims to play a positive role in every community that we work in and we place that strong community involvement at the heart of everything that we do.
“We are constantly looking for ways to make a transformational impact, therefore we are delighted to be able to bring superfast broadband to the area. Locals will now be able to benefit from the significant investment we have made in laying fibre up to Crossdykes Wind Farm and we hope soon to extend this to the communities surrounding our Hopsrig and Loganhead projects.”
The new superfast broadband has been warmly welcomed by local residents, who are looking forward to a significant improvement in their internet service.
Frank Carruthers, Crossdykes Local Community Liaison Officer,said: “Having a reliable internet connection has never been more essential. With home schooling and working from home now vital to everyday life, access to superfast broadband will be truly life-changing for many living in our rural communities.
“This project is testament to Muirhall Energy’s commitment to Dumfries and Galloway, and it is brilliant to see the wind farm already having a positive impact on the local community.”
In addition to the superfast broadband, Crossdykes Wind Farm, comprising of 10 turbines with a total generating capacity of 46MW, is benefiting local residents through Muirhall Energy’s dedicated community investment fund. An annual pot of £322,000 has been committed to for the long-term benefit of neighbouring communities – amounting to £8 million over the 25-year lifetime of the wind farm.
All of those eligible for superfast broadband will be individually contacted by Muirhall.