Vodafone has announced that the Herefordshire village of Ewyas Harold is the latest area to benefit from its ‘community-led network’ programme to boost mobile coverage. Ewyas Harold is one of twelve UK communities chosen by Vodafone following a pilot scheme in East Garston.
Suitcase-sized ‘Vodafone Open Sure Signal’ units have been installed in the area to provide 3G service. Instead of connecting directly into Vodafone’s network, they use existing broadband connections to carry voice and data traffic. A similar process is used by the Vodafone Sure Signal femtocells, which are available for individual properties.
Jesse Norman MP, whose constituency includes Ewyas Harold, said “I am delighted that after a lot of hard from myself and Cllr Graham Powell, Ewyas Harold has qualified as one of the 12 communities from across the UK to be involved in this Vodafone trial. With luck Ewyas Harold will enjoy the benefits of improved connectivity and I hope that the success of this trial will allow Vodafone’s Open Sure Signal to be rapidly rolled out across rural communities in Herefordshire.”
Vodafone plans to spend £900 million on its network across the UK this year. It’s committed to delivering indoor 2G, 3G and 4G coverage to 98% of the UK population by 2015.