A local authority has set aside £4 million of its own money to boost the rollout of high-speed fibre broadband, it has been reported.
Leicestershire County Council (LCC) has more than doubled the amount of funding set aside by the government for rural broadband investment in the county.
Last year, government agency Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) announced plans to spend £3.8 million upgrading countryside broadband networks in Leicestershire and Rutland.
This money came from the government's £530 million rural broadband fund.
LCC aims to deliver high-speed broadband services to around 170,000 homes and business across the county, helping to bridge the digital divide.
David Parsons, Leader of LCC, said it is "vital" to boost rural broadband speeds in order to improve the local economy.
"Rural communities and businesses can play a major role in the county's future, if they have the high speed connections they need," he stated.