October 2, 2018

Mobile UK speaks alongside Digital Economy Minister Margot James at the Conservative Party Conference

Gareth Elliott, Mobile UK’s Head of Policy and Communications, spoke on a platform at the Conservative Party conference this week alongside Digital Economy Minister Margot James MP, where he called for greater partnership between network operators, landowners, national, and local government to promote the roll out and enhancement of mobile connectivity.

Also participating in the panel discussion was Julian Sturdy MP, Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Rural Business, and Tim Breitmeyer, President of the Country Land and Business Association (CLA), which hosted the event.

The discussion focused on the challenges to bringing world-class digital connectivity to rural and hard to reach parts of the UK. In his remarks, Gareth explained that mobile operators are investing £2 billion into extending and expanding their networks, but emphasised the importance of planning reform, political leadership and strategic thinking from all layers of government to breaking down the barriers to better connectivity.

He also referenced Mobile UK’s new Councils and Connectivity report (see below), which provides guidance and best practice examples of partnership between mobile operators and local authorities, and highlights Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Combined Authority, Norfolk County Council and North Yorkshire County Council which are at the forefront on new and innovative partnership models.

The overall consensus of the panel was that world class connectivity cannot be delivered by network operators alone. By working together, local and national government, together with industry, can break down the barriers that continue to impede infrastructure deployment, and realise the ambition to roll out the next generation of mobile technology and build a truly mobile Britain.

Notes to Editors

  1. Mobile UK is the trade association for the UK’s mobile network operators -  EE, O2, Three and Vodafone.
Councils and Connectivity report PDF

About Building Mobile Britain

Building Mobile Britain logo

Building Mobile Britain is a campaign created by Mobile UK seeking to work with national and local government, as well as interested industry groups to overcome the challenges we face with expanding the existing mobile networks, while also developing innovative services for customers.

See here for further information - or #BuildingMobileBritain

Media Contacts

Gareth Elliott
Head of Policy and Communications
Tel: 07887 911 076

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