Government upgrades 4G coverage in Lake District

Rural towns and villages in the Lake District are the first to receive the improved 4G mobile coverage in hard-to-reach areas that the government has rolled out.

The first of 83 government-funded mast upgrades planned in England were switched on today near the market town of Keswick in Cumbria.

It means dozens of local businesses and community organisations in areas including Naddle, Thirlmere and St Johns-in-the-Vale, can supposedly access better connection.

Digital Infrastructure Minister Julia Lopez said: "The coverage boost will provide endless benefits for communities and visitors, ensuring people stay connected on the go, enabling people to work more efficiently and attracting vital investment to the rural economy."

This latest development is part of the Shared Rural Network – a £1 billion programme organised by the government and joint-funded with mobile network operators aimed at increasing mobile coverage in rural areas.

The boost has been carried out by upgrading existing mobile masts which previously only connected EE customers and anyone making 999 calls, meaning communities can benefit from improved connectivity without the visual impact involved when building new masts.

It will enable residents, tourists and businesses to access reliable 4G coverage from all four mobile network operators – EE, VMO2, Three and Vodafone.

Since the Shared Rural Network programme began in 2020, an additional 13,000 sq km have been able to receive coverage from all four operators.