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The UK’s slowest street for broadband is Williamson Road in Romney Marsh, Kent, it has been revealed, as uSwitch’s latest speed data once again exposed huge disparities in broadband provision across the UK.

Williamson Road residents receive an average speed of just 0.54Mbps – some 42 times slower than the UK average of 22.8Mbps.

By way of comparison, the fastest street was Sandy Lane in Cannock, Staffordshire, where speeds clocked in at a super-fast 72.86Mbps. That’s 135 times faster than Williamson Road.

The result is that it takes Williamson Road residents 19 hours to download a two-hour HD movie, 2.5hours to download a 45-minute HD show and 49 minutes to download a 20-song music album.

Sandy Lane broadband users need only wait eight minutes to download a two-hour HD film, one minute to download a 45-minute HD TV show and 22 seconds to download a 20-song music album.

The UK's top 10 slowest streets

Rank Street name & location Average download speed (Mbps)
1 Williamson Road, Lydd-on-Sea, Romney Marsh, Kent 0.535
2 Great Fen Road, Soham, Ely, Cambridgeshire 0.547
3 Styles Close, Luton, Bedfordshire 0.800
4 Mardu Lane, Clun, Craven Arms, Shropshire 0.884
5 Weston Beggard Lane, Weston Beggard, Hereford, Herefordshire 0.914
6 Cheadle Road, Alton, Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire 0.916
7 Mill Lane, Horndon on the Hill, Stanford-le-Hope, Essex 0.928
8 Llansadwrn, Menai Bridge, Isle of Anglesey 0.948
9 Solway Road, Moresby Parks, Whitehaven, Cumbria 0.963
10 Shorthorn Road, Stratton Strawless, Norwich, Norfolk 0.964

The study, which is based on one million tests conducted with uSwitch’s speed checker over six months, also showed that, despite marked improvements, over a third (34%) of the UK is still hamstrung by speeds of under 5Mbps.

Worse still, 32% have to cope with connection speeds of less than 3Mbps, taking the shine off data showing that more than a 22% of the nation gets average speeds of 30Mbps. A year ago, the figure was 15%.

Ewan Taylor-Gibson, broadband expert at uSwitch.com, said: “On the UK’s slowest street broadband speeds are so sluggish you could fly to the Bahamas and back again in the time it takes to download a film.

“Likely causes include the user’s distance from the nearest exchange or issues within the properties themselves.

“Wireless connections can be affected by the thickness of walls, for example, but your broadband provider can usually offer a solution if that’s the case.

Taylor-Gibson added. “Superfast broadband is now available to more than three quarters of the UK, but nearly a third (31%) don’t realise they can get it.

We looked at which of the 30 slowest streets had superfast availability and, interestingly, 37% of them do, but residents have obviously chosen not to take up superfast services.

“More needs to be done to increase awareness of fibre availability and its benefits. Superfast broadband isn’t as expensive as some users might think, with prices averaging an extra £9 a month on top of standard broadband costs.”

The UK's top 10 fastest streets

Rank Street name & location Average download speed (Mbps)
1 Sandy Lane, Hatherton, Cannock, Staffordshire 72.86
2 Stockfield Road, Yardley, Birmingham, West Midlands 71.37
3 Aigburth Drive, Liverpool, Merseyside 71.20
4 Southhouse Broadway, Edinburgh, City of Edinburgh 68.53
5 Winchcombe Close, Swindon, Wiltshire 68.41
6 Alexandra Court, East Lindsey, Skegness, Lincolnshire 68.19
7 The Close, Conway Avenue, Thornton-Cleveleys, Blackpool 65.29
8 University Terrace, Pittenweem, Anstruther, Fife 64.62
9 Bulwer Gardens, Barnet, Greater London 64.56
10 New Church Road, Hove, The City of Brighton & Hove 61.03

See more findings from uSwitch's study here: UK’s worst street for broadband revealed, and it’s 135 times slower than the fastest street

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