Steve Double, Member of Parliament for St Austell and Newquay, has joined a cross-party group of 75 MPs who have written to the Secretary of State, for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, Jeremy Wright MP, to ask the Government to make a requirement that network operators enable roaming between providers to improve mobile coverage in rural areas.
In some parts of the country, mainly in rural areas, patchy, intermittent coverage means that many people have limited or no access to mobile coverage.
In their letter the MPs call upon Ofcome to fully consider the costs and benefits of roaming in rural areas. While Ofcom has agreed that ‘co-operations of operators’ would improve mobile coverage, the MPs are urging the Secretary of State to take it one step further and make it a requirement of network providers to deliver it.
Commenting, Steve said:
“A lack of co-ordination between the network providers has left many rural areas, including some in Mid-Cornwall, covered by some but not all the networks. This is hampering economic, educational and leisure opportunities for residents in rural areas and remains a significant limiter for growth for the local, regional and national economy.
“The introduction of roaming services between networks will vastly increase the operational coverage for many of our constituents and so I am pleased to join with my colleagues to call on the Secretary of State to make it a requirement of network providers to deliver it.”