A NATIONAL charity has welcomed a £10m boost to rural broadband.

The Treasury announced plans to invest the extra cash in developing new ways to improve broadband speeds in the most remote rural areas yesterday (Thursday).

Many remote parts of Berkshire suffer from slow internet speeds and the Countryside Alliance - which represents the interests of people living in remote areas - welcomed the announcement.

The charity has lobbied for a variety of technologies, including mobile, satellite and wi-fi connections, to be used to deliver broadband to regions where fibre optic cables cannot reach.

Countryside Alliance executive chairman Sir Barney White-Spunner said high-speed broadband is now as important to people as water, electricity and gas.

He added: "This is great news for rural businesses and communities.

“We hope this fund will ensure the roll-out of broadband happens as swiftly as possible, which will ensure the digital divide does not grow any wider and enable rural communities to compete economically and socially with their urban counterparts.”