Connecting Shropshire

July 9, 2018 / Leave a comment / Permalink

Farming with superfast broadband in Bridgnorth

Related topics: Case study

During the last decade, Andrew has invested in a range of innovative agri-tech, which
requires a reliable Superfast broadband connection and strong Wi-Fi to integrate most effectively and provide optimum efficiency in an ever-developing agri-tech sector.

The Challenge

The Williamsons have struggled with poor broadband for many years which created lots of challenges for all the family and for the agri-tech systems that make the farm run more efficiently.  Slow broadband was a source of frustration since the family needed it for everything from emails and internet banking to mapping field data for spraying and fertilising. Andrew also needed to use the internet for the farming business to submit VAT returns online

“We had a very slow broadband connection of around 1mbps – even general internet browsing was difficult. Watching a three-minute clip on YouTube would take about 15 minutes. By 2020, we have to be able to submit quarterly accounts online. We do all our applications for grants, subsidies BPS (basic payment scheme), payments online.

We registered interest as soon as we heard about it and I rang up to see if it would work for us. Airband sent out an engineer to see if it was a viable solution for us and it was. Airband engineers returned within a fortnight to install the service. The engineers arrived by 9am and installed the receiver on the house and wired it into the router provided. By lunchtime we were up-and-running.

Andrew was aware of the Connecting Shropshire programme and found out that Airband were delivering Superfast broadband access within his area.

The Solution

“We are delighted with the service we are getting. Having superfast broadband means we can do the things everyone else takes for granted. It makes our lives a lot easier and I can’t imagine being without it now.

I use software applications to spread seed, fertilisers and sprays at a ‘variable rate’ in the fields. Generally I create a map, which I then transfer to the tractor using a USB stick. Now that I have better broadband connectivity at the farm, my next objective is to improve my mobile phone connectivity. Also, now that I have better broadband and a stronger Wi-Fi signal, I am looking to create a Wi-Fi hotspot in the farmyard which will upload data from the tractor into the farm software as soon as it comes back from the field into the farmyard.

Having an Airband superfast broadband connection means that I can quickly and easily sort out online farming admin and it also adds social options that we have never had access to before. We can watch films without any buffering. It’s a very reliable and robust service. It has been a very positive experience to date and on the times I have had to contact Airband they have responded very quickly.”

Andrew has Airband’s Superfast HomePlus package, which offers 30mbps download, 2mbps upload and unlimited data.

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