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Hull is the UK’s slowest city for broadband speeds, it has been revealed, in a uSwitch study that lays bare the nation’s worst-served and most sluggish cities.

Due to begin its stint as UK City of Culture next year, Hull’s average broadband speed stood at 12.45Mbps in the six-month period between August 2015 and February 2016, making it the slowest of the 42 cities measured.

Aberdeen and Milton Keynes were second and third slowest respectively with average connection speeds of 15.67Mbps and 17.10Mbps.

Despite government claims that 90% of the UK can now access super-fast broadband, the study found that just 22 cities enjoy average speeds over 24Mbps, which is the figure officially deemed to be ‘superfast’.

Worryingly, London (22.44Mbps) and Edinburgh (21.07Mbps) were not among them, suggesting that prohibitively high living expenses or pricing of super-fast services are dissuading inhabitants from signing up.

The study also found that in spite of years of major infrastructure investment three in ten broadband users in urban locations are hamstrung by actual connection speeds of less than 5Mbps, while just one in ten gets above 50Mbps.

Rank UK City/Town Average download speed (Mbps) 9 Aug 2015 to 8 Feb 2016
1 Middlesbrough 34.46
2 Belfast 34.34
3 Brighton 33.80
4 Swindon 31.83
5 Nottingham 30.43
6 Cardiff 30.23
7 Bristol 28.63
8 Huddersfield 27.71
9 Plymouth 27.33
10 Southampton 27.03
11 Sunderland 26.73
12 Liverpool 26.60
13 Bournemouth 26.57
14 Glasgow 26.32
15 Leeds 26.18
16 Birmingham 25.79
17 Wigan 25.52
18 Barnsley 25.34
19 Leicester 24.76
20 Derby 24.54
21 Warrington 24.52
22 Preston 24.41
23 Manchester 23.81
24 Stoke-on-Trent 23.20
25 Reading 22.73
26 Northampton 22.64
27 Coventry 22.48
28 London 22.44
29 Swansea 22.29
30 Bradford 21.93
31 Peterborough 21.79
32 York 21.29
33 Newport 21.24
34 Newcastle 21.14
35 Edinburgh 21.07
36 Norwich 19.43
37 Doncaster 18.38
38 Sheffield 18.36
39 Wakefield 17.49
40 Milton Keynes 17.10
41 Aberdeen 15.67
42 Hull 12.42

Ewan Taylor-Gibson, broadband expert at, said: “Hull’s broadband infrastructure is unique. It’s the only place in the UK that doesn’t have Openreach lines. Instead, independent telecoms supplier KCOM provides the broadband service.

Although KCOM is currently rolling out ultrafast-capable, fibre-to-the-home connections in Hull, actual speed tests taken by broadband users would suggest this hasn’t reached enough homes yet to make an impact on the average."

Taylor-Gibson added: “But it’s not just Hull in the slow lane. The UK’s cities should be leading the charge when it comes to broadband speeds, yet just 22 cities have broadband users with average speeds of more than 24Mbps.

“With capital cities like London and Edinburgh not on that list, we should be asking what more can be done to encourage the adoption of superfast broadband now it’s so widely available.”

“The Government’s latest rollout figures reveal superfast broadband is now available to over 90% of homes and businesses in the UK and counting, with £1.7 billion pledged to bring that figure to 95% by 2017.

"But our data suggests take up isn’t high enough - even in our biggest cities. With fibre ever more available, home broadband users need to know it’s there, and it needs to be priced right, too.”

Want to compare your own broadband speeds? Test your speed and learn about speed stats in your area with our internet speed test.

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