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A £750,000 grant from the government's Broadband Delivery UK programme has helped Northern Rail deploy 20Mb Wi-Fi for rail passengers in West Yorkshire.

As part of a joint initiative between Northern Rail, Leeds City Council, City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council, BDUK and the West Yorkshire Combined Authority, electric trains in the area now offer high-speed broadband connectivity.

Wi-Fi is available for free on-board trains operating between Leeds, Bradford Forster Square, Skipton and Ilkley.

BDUK's financial contribution came from its Urban Broadband Fund, which is designed to improve access to broadband in major towns and cities across the UK.

Rob Warnes, Planning and Programmes Director for Northern Rail, said there has been a "great" initial response to the Wi-Fi network, which launched in late 2014.

He explained that over 100,000 users have registered already, with consumers praising the speed of the service and the content that is available.

Ed Vaizey MP, Minister for Culture and the Digital Economy, said providing free Wi-Fi on public transport and in public spaces is "just one of the ways" the government is boosting connectivity across UK cities.

"It is great to see the positive impact this is already having for commuters in Bradford and Leeds," he stated.

"With continued investment in super-fast broadband we will ensure our cities continue to be attractive places to live, visit and do business in."

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