Dumfries and Galloway Council are delighted to hear that Stranraer Marina will benefit from a share of a £36 million fund partly awarded to the Borderlands Partnership region by the UK Government’s Department for Science, Innovation and Technology.
This £3.8 million additional funding, shared between the marina and 4 other Borderlands’ projects, is separate from the Borderlands Inclusive Growth Deal and feeds into the Borderlands’ Digital Infrastructure Strategy.
This means that the Borderlands, with Stranraer Marina named specifically, will be one of ten new 5G Innovation Regions to lead on delivering the UK Government’s vision for communities across the UK to take full advantage of the transformative effect that advanced wireless connectivity and digital technologies can provide.
The successful 5G bid submitted by the Borderlands Partnership comprises five local authorities in England and Scotland – Cumberland Council, Dumfries and Galloway Council, Northumberland County Council, Scottish Borders Council and Westmorland and Furness Council.
Cutting-edge 5G capability is considered essential in this day and age to increase employability and business opportunity and this connectivity is seen as a top requirement for people who want to live and visit our region and the Borderlands area as a whole.
Leader of Dumfries and Galloway Council, Gail Macgregor said: “This is tremendous news and places our region at the forefront of digital technology. With this announcement we are able to look to the future. From fast efficient sat-nav technology to self-driving vehicles to virtual reality, 5G creates vast possibilities for a host of industries and sectors and places Stranraer Marina front and centre, not only as a tourism destination, but as an innovative hub for industry. Specifically for the marina, there are also potential real-time environmental monitoring applications associated with the marine environment and eco-systems. It also opens possibilities to re-shape services, boost local economic growth and boost technology and innovation.
“This could be a game changer for Stranraer Marina. Faster, more efficient 5G is becoming an essential requirement for modern technology and we must do everything we can to keep up with this. Stranraer Marina is a fantastic starting point, but we will continue to lobby and identify opportunities to roll this out across the rest of Dumfries and Galloway as soon as is feasibly possible.”