Strategy launched to tackle digital inequality in South London

A new strategy has been launched to tackle digital inequality and slow broadband connectivity across five South London boroughs.

The project, launched by the South London Partnership and Local London – funded by the Greater Local Authority (GLA) – aims to improve the quality and accessibility of digital services in boroughs including Bexley, Bromley, Greenwich, Croydon and Merton.

Map showing slow and no connectivity in South London Partnership boroughs (Picture: South London Partnership)

Across these areas, the two partnerships reported 156,000 properties cannot access a gigabit-capable broadband service.

Gigabit-capable broadband means download speeds of at least 1 gigabit-per-second. The Government has set itself a target to make gigabit broadband available to 85 per cent of the UK by 2025 and nationwide by 2030. 

The strategy is part of a wider pilot which will deliver an “interactive mapping tool” and an online “digital toolkit” that will help borough officers deliver digital infrastructure to their sites and encourage investment.

Map showing slow and no connectivity in Local London boroughs (Picture: Local London)

Theo Blackwell, chief digital officer at GLA, said: “Widely available, easily accessible digital connectivity is essential for people to reach public services and is key to helping cities grow, yet there are still parts of London that suffer from a lack of commercial investment in digital infrastructure, and this results in gaps in internet coverage or ‘not spots’.

 “We must address these gaps and drive up the quality and accessibility of the services that are already available, to help the capital to be a fairer, more prosperous, and more equal London for everyone.”

Pictured top: Fibre optics (Picture: blizzy78 / Flickr)

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