Village school celebrates arrival of high-speed Broadband
Rob GarrattA village community which has endured a rocky year after losing its pub, shop and post office finally has something to celebrate about as its school unveils a new superfast broadband connection.Rob Garratt
A village community which has endured a rocky year after losing its pub, shop and post office finally has something to celebrate about as its school unveils a new superfast broadband connection.
Families living in Beeston, near Dereham, were left stranded without vital services after they lost their local the Ploughshare nearly a year ago, with the post office shop following suit in November.
But youngsters at Beeston Primary School are now logging onto the internet with a state of the art fibre optic broadband connection - with nearly 50 high-tech machines between the school's 74 pupils.
The new PC suite was formally opened yesterdayby East of England MEP Vicky Ford and Conservative prospective parliamentary candidate for mid-Norfolk, George Freeman.
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Headteacher Chris Perry said the facilities helped to put the village on the map and ensure the school can maintain enough pupils to run three different class age groups.
However he said because the high speed connection was thanks to a specialist Norfolk County Council initiative to bring broadband into schools, the link could not be shared with the local community.
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But Mr Freeman said: 'In an age of austerity really the county council should be challenged to roll this technology out to the rest of the community so businesses and families can benefit.'
Ms Ford said the school's fast speed connection helped shatter the myth that rural communities should be forced to suffer poor connection speeds.
She added: 'There are parts of the county labelled as a 'non-spot' where it is possible to achieve a broadband solution. It's time to move forward.'
The two politicians also gave the school an assembly, fielding questions and suggestions from the 4 to 11-year-olds. The three policy ideas the youngsters put forward were to use more solar power, to have stricter rules on dropping litter and to have more rights for the disabled.