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The first phase of Swindon's free wireless project has now been completed, meaning consumers are a step closer to improved broadband services.

According to the Local Government Chronicle, the network has been rolled out in the Highworth area of the town after delays caused by bad weather and other logistical problems.

The timescale for overall completion has been extended as a result, but free web services are still to be provided to residents across the city.

Rod Bluh, leader of Swindon Council, said it has been a somewhat controversial decision for a public sector joint venture to compete with private broadband providers, but there will be commercial benefits if the local scheme is sold on to other councils.

Commenting on the project, he added: "I've taken a bit of political heat over this, but local people are taking to it like ducks to water."

Earlier this month, the Advertiser 24 reported that engineering firm Babcock International is to fit a chain of antennas enabling high-speed wireless broadband in Norwich.

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