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The rollout of super-fast broadband under the government-funded Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) scheme accelerated in the final quarter of 2013, it has been revealed.

Latest statistics published by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) reveal the number of premises with access to fibre broadband, as a result of the initiative, almost tripled to 273,731 between October and December.

At the end of Q3 2013, there were just 111,968 homes and businesses in rural areas with access to a super-fast connection funded by BDUK.

The department noted that the £1.2 billion network upgrade programme is "well on track", explaining that the number of premises passed will rise from 10,000 per week to 40,000 per week by the summer.

It added that the government's "transformation" of broadband in rural areas is "on track" to deliver coverage to 95 per cent of the country by 2017.

The DCMS revealed that half the BDUK projects around the country now have 'live' cabinets, with 1,000 having gone live in rural areas around Britain.

And many projects are already ahead of schedule, as infrastructure work continues apace across the UK countryside.

Culture Secretary Maria Miller said having super-fast broadband is "really important" to people up and down the country.

"These figures prove that there is now a real momentum with thousands of homes and businesses now getting access each week," she added.

"This is part of our long term economic plan and broadband will be instrumental in driving growth and boosting local economies throughout the UK."

Another £250 million in government funding is set to be allocated to local authorities around the UK under plans to increase the number of homes and businesses able to take advantage of super-fast broadband services.

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