17 November 2016
By Bryan T. Smyth
Following National Digital Week 2016 last week, the Ludgate Hub in Skibbereen has been awarded second place in the Future-proof and quality of service category at the European Broadband Awards 2016 in Brussels. The European Broadband Awards, which took place in Brussels earlier this week were established by the European Commission to recognise outstanding broadband internet projects all over Europe and to highlight the successful establishment of broadband infrastructure.
Officially opened in July this year, the Ludgate Digital Hub is the first rural hub to receive a massive 1GB (1000Mb) connectivity provided by Vodafone as the town is connected to SIRO’s 100% fibre-optic broadband network. This has turned Skibbereen into a ‘1 Gigabit town’.
In total 66 projects from all over Europe were selected as finalists in across five categories focusing on innovative models of financing, cost reduction, affordability, competition and future proof and quality of service. Some of the projects shortlisted focused on rural broadband connectivity, while some have wider scale and cover regions or even their whole country.
Speaking after the award ceremony, Gráinne Dwyer, CEO of the Ludgate Hub said: “I was delighted to be in Brussels to represent all the fantastic people who have worked so hard to get the Ludgate Hub up and running. We hope this win will be inspirational for rural Ireland. We’re working hard in Skibbereen to create a blueprint for the ‘1 Gigabit town’ that other rural towns around Ireland and Europe can follow.”
Last weekend the Ludgate Hub organized Ireland’s second ever National Digital Week in Skibbereen in the heart of West Cork, with 1,600 entrepreneurs, digital marketers, technology enthusiasts and those embarking on a digital journey, in attendance.
National Digital Week aims to develop entrepreneurship by making digital accessible for all, and is the only event of its kind in a non-urban area in Ireland. It caters for everyone and anyone with an interest in the future of digital technology. The event was supported by event partners AIB, Vodafone and Google.