West Tyrone Sinn Féin -- Building an Ireland of Equals

DAERA needs focus on lack of Broadband availability to Farm Businesses - Cllr Campbell

Published: 13 May, 2019

West Tyrone Sinn Féin Councillor Glenn Campbell has called on the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) to focus more on the lack of Broadband available to farmers in the most rural parts of the North.

West Tyrone Sinn Féin Councillor Glenn Campbell has called on the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) to focus more on the lack of Broadband available to farmers in the most rural parts of the North.

Monday 13 May 2019

West Tyrone Sinn Féin Councillor Glenn Campbell has called on the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) to focus more on the lack of Broadband available to farmers in the most rural parts of the North.

Speaking after DAERA invited applications for Technology Demonstration Farms on Friday (10/05/19), Cllr Campbell said,

"Whilst I welcome and support the call for dairy farmers to come forward and demonstrate their use of technology to other farmers, I am concerned that many farm businesses in West Tyrone, and across the north, are lacking the provision of a decent Internet connection.

"There is no doubt that, in response to the recent invitation from DAERA, dairy farmers will come forward seeking go open up their farm to visitors to demonstrate best practice. However, I feel that the vast majority of farmers face a fundamental barrier to the adoption of new technology. These farmers would see a decent Broadband signal as an important first step towards utilising technology within their businesses."

Referring to correspondence received in December 2018 from DAERA by the Broadband Working Group of Fermanagh and Omagh District Council, Cllr Campbell expressed concern that that issue of Broadband was not being taken seriously enough by the Department.

"In December 2018, the Rural Affairs Division of DAERA advised the Fermanagh and Omagh District Council Cross Party Working Group, that the department holds no information on the Broadband speed available to the 5,117 farms in the Fermanagh and Omagh District Council area. In the same correspondence, they also advised that they had not provided any funding towards Broadband provision in the Council district. I would urge DAERA to consider movement on both these issue - the lack of acceptable Broadband access in rural area needs to be urgently address."

ENDS