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Read news and articles on the progress of the superfast broadband rollout in Scotland and more.

Digital Scotland treads the boards with Bard in the Botanics

Friday, 08 July 2016

Digital Scotland took centre stage this week as players from the leading Scottish Shakespeare company Bard in the Botanics helped launch the latest batch of high-speed fibre broadband in Glasgow.

Actors who are currently performing in Twelfth Night – joined Councillor George Redmond and Councillor Mohammed Razaq and members of the Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband team to unveil one of the new street cabinets that will serve part of Glasgow’s West End.

It’s just one of a number of areas across the city where high-speed broadband is now available thanks to the £410 million Digital Scotland Programme.

Across Scotland, nearly 600,000 premises are now able to connect to fibre-based services through the Digital Scotland project, led by the Scottish Government. Among the total are nearly 62,000 Glasgow homes and businesses, including premises in Baillieston, Govan, Croftfoot and Possil. Across Scotland, nearly 600,000 premises are now able to connect to fibre-based services through the Digital Scotland project, led by the Scottish Government.

In central Glasgow, more than 1,900 premises have now been passed by the DSSB roll-out, with more deployment to follow as engineers from Openreach, BT’s local network business, continue work on the ground.

A summer fixture in Glasgow, Bard in the Botanics’ performances have earned the group its title of Scotland’s premier Shakespeare company. Running until July 30th, this year the unique outdoor festival features four new productions - all staged in the beautiful surroundings of Glasgow’s Botanic Gardens.

Celebrating their 15th anniversary, the 2016 season features well-known classics Twelfth Night (until July 9th) and Macbeth (July 13-30th) as well as Shakespeare’s lesser-known work Coriolanus (until July 9th).

This year also sees the company introduce a new strand to its work, Writing the Renaissance, which explores the writers and playwrights from Shakespeare’s time. The company will perform Christopher Marlowe’s Doctor Faustus from July 14–30th.

To coincide with their 2016 season, Bard in the Botanics and Digital Scotland are teaming up to offer four lucky winners a pair of tickets to one of their performances. For more information on how to enter, visit either the Bard in the Botanics or Digital Scotland Facebook and Twitter pages.

Robert Elkin from Bard in the Botanics said: “It was a pleasure for Bard in the Botanics to help welcome more fibre broadband to the West End of Glasgow. It’ll certainly have a positive effect for everyone across the area.

“Having an improved connection will not only help users to get up to date information on the work of Bard in the Botanics, as well as everything else happening on Glasgow’s cultural calendar; it will provide improved accessibility to find out more about Shakespeare’s rich history.

“Glasgow is celebrated for its rich arts scene. For those starting out, accessibility to good internet speeds makes it possible to get your work seen by an audience. Whether it’s for research, developing ideas or displaying your work on a publishing site, it’s vital in opening opportunities and letting artists grow and develop.”

Fibre broadband offers fast and reliable connections at speeds of up to 80Mbps* and there are many suppliers in the marketplace to choose from.

Whether you own a business, work from home or want to keep in touch with friends and family, fibre broadband enables multiple users to connect to the internet at high speeds and get better, faster access to online services.

The Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband programme – in partnership with the Scottish Government and BT – will deliver access to fibre broadband to around 95% of premises by the end of March 2018, when combined with existing commercial roll-out plans. The £410 million programme underpins the Scottish Government’s aim for Scotland to become a world class digital nation by 2020.

Councillor George Redmond, Executive Member for Jobs, Business and Investment at Glasgow City Council said: “It was a pleasure to join members of Bard in the Botanics and Digital Scotland to announce more fibre broadband in Glasgow. It's good to see this project reaching more communities and giving an increasing number of homes and businesses the opportunity to connect to high-speed broadband.  We’re determined to make sure that everyone in Glasgow has access to digital services – and the skills and confidence to go online and use them.” 

The Digital Scotland rollout is delivered through two projects – led by Highlands and Islands Enterprise in their area and the Scottish Government in the rest of Scotland.

Other funding partners include the UK Government through Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK), local authorities and the European Regional Development Fund. BT has invested £126 million in the two projects, in addition to its commercial rollout.  

Sara Budge, Programme Director for Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband, said: “It’s great news that many residents and businesses in Glasgow are now able to receive fibre broadband thanks to the programme, with areas in Glasgow’s West End benefitting and with more local coverage to follow.

“A huge thanks to Bard in the Botanics for taking time out of their busy schedule to join us with our celebrations.

“The difference that fibre broadband can make is amazing. Once people have signed up with a service provider, it will give much more flexibility whether it’s at work or in the home booking your theatre tickets!”

Liz Mallinson, BT Scotland’s Fibre Broadband Director, added: “Thousands of Glaswegians can now get connected to their best ever broadband speeds, with the city among the best in the UK for high-speed internet access.

“Many local people are already enjoying the benefits and whether you use the internet to book theatre tickets, study literature or stream the latest productions of the Bard’s works, you’ll be applauding a move to the fast lane.”

Local people can check the interactive map on the Digital Scotland website ( to find out if they can get the service and further information is also available on Twitter @ScotSuperfast or Facebook at

To keep up with Bard in the Botanics and for more information on their 2016 season, visit