CityFibre has appointed a new City Manager for Bournemouth as it prepares to start work on a £35m project that will see almost every home and business have access to a full fibre broadband network.

Bournemouth has been chosen as the latest town to benefit from a strategic partnership between CityFibre and Vodafone, which will see full fibre connectivity reach one million UK homes and businesses by 2021.

Lucy Cooper will spearhead delivery of the Bournemouth project. As City Manager, she will be responsible for ensuring the state-of-the-art full fibre network is implemented with minimal disruption while delivering maximum benefit for the wider community.

Born and bred locally, Lucy returned to the area ten years ago having worked in London in both the public and private sector. She spent four years running government business support through BEIS, where she rolled out a BDUK programme for Dorset County Council.

Lucy was President of the Poole Chamber of Trade and Commerce until 2014, when she set up the Dorset Growth Hub, an information and support service to help local start-ups and existing businesses. She is currently a board member of Silicon South, a non-profit organisation dedicated to accelerating Dorset’s digital economy.

As lead point-of-contact, Lucy will be a key advocate for the benefits that a full fibre network will bring. Given her previous work with stakeholders across the town, she is well placed to grow Bournemouth’s digital future.

Lucy Cooper said: “A state-of-the-art digital infrastructure plays a crucial role in growing and protecting the local economy, so I’m delighted to be joining an organisation that is doing everything it can to transform cities across the country.

“As a Bournemouth local, I know that there are practical issues with current broadband service that frustrate people on a daily basis, such as the quality of coverage outside the town centre. I am looking forward to working with residents to ensure they are with us every step of the way and understand the difference that full fibre broadband can have now and in the future.

“The benefits of full fibre connectivity are huge, particularly to some of the priority sectors within the area – Creative/Digital, Medtech for Healthcare and Advanced Manufacturing/ Engineering. With the full support of Bournemouth Borough Council, work on dramatically extending Bournemouth’s full fibre network is expected to begin later this year.

“It’s a great time to be joining CityFibre’s Gigabit City project in Bournemouth. Working alongside the new BCP Council and many other key stakeholders, the town is a great choice to invest in as there’s so much work going on to improve infrastructure and connectivity,” Lucy added.

CityFibre will use modern build techniques to deploy the network quickly and minimise disruption to residents. Once completed, nearly every home and business in the town will have full fibre access.

Rob Hamlin, Commercial Director at CityFibre, added: “We are thrilled that Lucy has joined the team and will be using her experience to drive the Bournemouth project forward and benefit all its residents and businesses.

“Our ‘fibre to the premises’ programme is going to be a game changer in Bournemouth and nobody is better placed than Lucy to drive home the message and help people discover more about the impact this investment will have on the town’s digital future.”

To find out more about CityFibre’s Gigabit City vision for Bournemouth and to discover career opportunities, visit: cityfibre.com/gigabit-cities.

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