A group of knitters has helped welcome the arrival of fibre broadband in a Scottish Borders town.
Around 3,400 homes and businesses in Selkirk are now able to access faster internet speeds thanks to the Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband rollout.
The premises in Selkirk join more than 17,500 in the Scottish Borders able to access fibre broadband.
Across Scotland, more than 438,000 homes and businesses have been connected by the Digital Scotland programme.
To celebrate the rollout’s arrival in Selkirk, members of The Souter Stormers knitting group ‘yarn-bombed’ many of the area’s landmarks – covering phone boxes, lampposts and even a statue of Sir Walter Scott in wool.
Councillor Stuart Bell, Scottish Border Council’s (SBC) executive member for economic development, said: “It’s really exciting to hear that so many residences in and around Selkirk are already able to connect to fibre broadband.
“The work done by The Souter Stormers certainly brought a great twist to the arrival of fibre broadband in the town.”
SBC has contributed £8.4m to the Digital Scotland rollout in addition to block funding from all the Scottish local authorities.
“We know how important access to high-speed internet technology is to both residents and businesses – which is why Scottish Borders Council chose to invest £8.4m into the programme’s rollout,” said Cllr Bell.
“Fibre broadband will provide many opportunities for homes and businesses, once they sign up to a service provider. Seeing this project develop across the Scottish Borders is something which I feel is exciting to witness.”
'Purl' in the crown
Sara Budge, programme director for Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband, said: “With homes and businesses in Selkirk being able to connect fibre broadband, residents will see a positive boost in what they can achieve online, once signing up with a service provider.
“It was fantastic having The Souter Stormers help us with our celebrations and their efforts to yarnstorm one of our new fibre cabinets made this a unique and memorable launch.”
Kay Ross, a member of the knitting group, said: “It was a pleasure that The Souter Stormers could help with the launch of fibre broadband in Selkirk.
“The group have worked extremely hard over the months, both with their creative and artistic spark and transforming Selkirk into something fun and unique.”
BT is investing £126m in the Digital Scotland programme, in addition to its commercial rollout of fibre broadband in Scotland.
BT Scotland director Brendan Dick said: “Thousands more people in the Scottish Borders now have access to their best ever broadband speeds thanks to the Digital Scotland project.
“Hopefully the arrival of fibre in Selkirk will be the ‘purl’ in the crown for the town. I hope local people and businesses will soon be taking advantage of all the opportunities on offer.”