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Homes and businesses in Bournemouth could have access to fibre-optic broadband services by the start of next year, it has been suggested.

Fibrecity has confirmed to the Bournemouth Echo that its project in the area, which is currently seeing the firm install cabling through the network of sewers, is on track for completion in early 2011.

It is believed that the service will offer residents access to connection speeds up to 50 times faster than the current UK average.

Deborah Lear, spokeswoman of the company, told the newspaper: "We are doing our best to do this work responsibly and can connect up to 300 properties per day so the work is quick."

Scottish authorities recently confirmed that the Pathfinder North Broadband project to supply high-speed web services to public buildings in the Highlands has been completed.

Over 800 schools, libraries and local authority sites have been given access to the technology.

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