The slowest street for broadband is named as Williamson Road in Romney Marsh, Kent, while Sandy Lane in Cannock, Staffordshire is the fastest
Williamson Road has a dire average speed of 0.54Mbps – 135 times slower than Sandy Lane’s superfast 72.86Mbps and 42 times slower than the UK average speed (22.8Mbps)
A third (34%) of the UK still struggles with sub 5Mbps speeds, while an unlucky 23% make do with speeds of less than 3Mbps
North-South divide: the North of England offers twice as many speedy streets as the South, according to uSwitch’s top 30 fastest streets
Postcode lottery: three of the UK’s fastest streets are in Staffordshire – also home to two of the slowest streets.
With an average download speed of 0.54Mbps, Williamson Road in Romney Marsh, Kent, has the slowest broadband in the UK, according to the latest consumer speed test data collected by Uswitch.com, the independent price comparison and switching service.
Williamson Road’s crippling average speed is a staggering 135 times slower than the UK’s fastest street, Sandy Lane in Cannock, Staffordshire, where average speeds reached 72.86Mbps over the past six months – and 42 times slower than the UK average speed for the same period (22.8Mbps).
On Williamson Road it would take 19 hours to download a two-hour HD film, 2.5 hours to download a 45-minute HD TV show and 49 minutes to download a 20-song music album. By contrast, on Sandy Lane, it would take 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.
According to the research, which is based on more than one million speed tests run by broadband users over six months, a third (34%) of the UK still struggles with sub 5Mbps speeds, while an unlucky 23% make do with sluggish speeds of less than 3Mbps.
That said, the number of people enjoying superfast speeds is growing. More than a fifth (22%) of broadband users are now getting average speeds of 30+Mbps – up from 15% a year ago. However, despite fibre broadband now being available to 78% of the population, a recent uSwitch survey revealed that awareness of fibre broadband is still very low – less than a third (31%) believe they can access it in their local area.
uSwitch’s speed test data reveals a distinct North-South divide, with the South lagging behind in the race for faster broadband. Based on the 30 fastest streets, the North of England offers twice as many speedy streets as its southern counterpart. In addition, Scotland is home to six of the UK’s fastest streets, and just two of the slowest.
Broadband speeds are still a postcode lottery, even within the same county. Cannock in Staffordshire is home to two of the UK’s fastest streets for broadband, as is Stoke-on-Trent, but Stoke is also home to one of the slowest streets, along with Burton-on-Trent. The average download speed on Cheadle Road in Alton, Stoke-on-Trent is 54 times slower than Werrington Road in Bucknall, which is in the same county.
Meanwhile, Kent is home to the slowest streets in the UK, and also one of the fastest streets. Williamson Road in Romney Marsh is 106 times slower than Becket Mews in Canterbury. Norfolk doesn’t fare well as its streets appear four times in the slowest broadband list – more than any other county. The slowest Norfolk street, Shorthorn Road in Stratton Strawless is just 25 minutes drive from the centre of Norwich and yet average speeds are a dismal 0.96Mbps.
Surprisingly, London doesn’t get away unscathed. Although the capital has three streets that are among the fastest in the UK, Uxbridge Road in Feltham is a broadband blackspot, where average speeds for the past six months are just 1.03Mbps.
The table below shows the 30 slowest streets for broadband in the UK:
|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|
|11||Foxbury Road, St Leonards, Ringwood, Dorset||0.976|
|12||Corrie Road, Kinlochleven, Highland, Scotland||0.985|
|13||The Crescent, Allington, Allington Gardens, Grantham, Lincolnshire||1.01|
|14||The Line, Linton, Ross-on-Wye, Herefordshire||1.025|
|15||Uxbridge Road, Feltham, Greater London||1.030|
|16||North Lopham Road, Kenninghall, Norfolk||1.037|
|17||Coningsby Gardens East, Woodthorpe, Nottingham, Nottinghamshire||1.039|
|18||Kingfisher Drive, Birmingham, West Midlands||1.105|
|19||Sovereign Fold Road, Leigh, Wigan, Greater Manchester||1.116|
|20||McKinnon Drive, Mayfield, Dalkeith, Midlothian||1.122|
|21||Brampton Road, Hereford, Herefordshire||1.153|
|22||Marlingford Road, Easton, Norwich, Norfolk||1.174|
|23||Tarr Steps, Thornaby, Stockton-on-Tees, County Durham||1.226|
|24||Thornham Lane, Middleton, Manchester||1.236|
|25||Axial Drive, Colchester, Essex||1.244|
|26||Balmoral Drive, Willenhall, West Midlands||1.249|
|27||Grange Terrace, Pelton Fell, Chester le Street, County Durham||1.258|
|28||Bitham Lane, Stretton, Burton-on-Trent, Staffordshire||1.267|
|29||Stubb Road, Hickling, Norwich, Norfolk||1.314|
|30||Manor Close, Denton, Manchester||1.320|
Source: Uswitch.com Broadband Speed Tracker
The table below shows the 30 fastest streets for broadband in the UK:
|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|
|11||Rowantree Crescent, Dundee, Dundee City||60.91|
|12||Barnacre Road, Longridge, Preston, Lancashire||60.78|
|13||Byron Road, South Croydon, Greater London||60.23|
|14||King Street, Market Rason, Lincolnshire||59.45|
|15||Carmarthen Way, Rushden, Northamptonshire||58.27|
|16||Birkrig, Skelmersdale, Lancashire||58.11|
|17||Becket Mews, Canterbury, Kent||57.33|
|18||Friars Street, Hereford, Herefordshire||57.16|
|19||Luss Avenue, Greenock, Inverclyde||56.12|
|20||Castle Lea, Caldicot, Monmouthshire||53.11|
|21||St John’s View, Mansfield, Nottinghamshire||52.93|
|22||Caiesdykes Road, Aberdeen, Aberdeen City||52.75|
|23||Tuesley Lane, Godalming, Surrey||52.60|
|24||Longacres, Cannock, Staffordshire||52.38|
|25||Harcourt Road, Aberdeen, Aberdeen City||49.69|
|26||Monza Close, Buckley, Flintshire||49.49|
|27||Werrington Road, Bucknall, Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire||49.01|
|28||Dalrymple Road, Brockley, Greater London||48.96|
|29||Brinkworth Close, Chippenham, Wiltshire||48.88|
|30||Highwood Drive, Nailsworth, Stroud, Gloucestershire||48.74|
Source: Uswitch.com Broadband Speed Tracker
Ewan Taylor-Gibson, broadband expert at Uswitch.com, comments: “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.
“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.
“A recent House of Lords report called for broadband to be defined as a public utility and voiced concerns about the delivery of superfast services. Terrible speeds can isolate people and take their toll on businesses, schools, even house prices. A nationwide rollout of fibre broadband to the furthest and most remote corners of the UK has never been more urgent.”
Anyone frustrated with their broadband service can test their speeds and compare their results to other local users with different providers here: www.uswitch.com/broadband/speedtest
For more information visit www.uswitch.com or call 0800 093 0607
Notes to Editors Broadband users ran a grand total of 1,030,865 consumer speed tests during the six-month period 1st August 2014- 1st February 2015 inclusive, using Uswitch.com’s free speed testing tool. For the top 30 streets We took the slowest and fastest postcodes from the 1,030,865 speeds tests, across 33,015 unique IP addresses within 1,451 postcodes. These were taken over a six month period - 1st August 2014 to 1st February 2015. In order for a street to qualify for inclusion in the top or bottom 30, tests from at least 10 unique IP addresses and at least 10 postcodes were required.
See tables of UK’s 30 slowest and 30 fastest streets for broadband above
Fastest street in UK is Sandy Lane (72.86Mbps) and the slowest street is Williamson Road (0.54Mbps). Average download speed is now 22.8Mbps according to the latest Ofcom research. Calculations: 72.86/0.54 = 135 and 22.8/0.54 = 44.2
Figures take all 1,030,865 consumer speed tests into consideration
Calculated using this online tool: http://download.stormloader.com/ File sizes: average HD film 4.5GB, average 20-song music album 200MB, average HD TV episode 600MB. For Sandy Lane’s 20 song music album, the 22 seconds calculation is (200MG x 8) / 72.86.
Based on 1,896,977 consumer speed tests during the six-month period Aug 2013-Jan 2014 inclusive
Fibre availability figure taken from Ofcom’s 2014 Communications Market Report
From Uswitch research conducted via Opinium on 23-30 December 2014. Sample: 2,001 UK adults aged 18+.
Williamson Road = 54Mbps and Becket Mews in Canterbury = 57.33Mbps. 57.33/0.54 = 106
Flight time from UK to Nassau, Bahamas is 9 hours, time to download an HD movie with a speed of 0.54Mbps is 19 hours, see footnote 4
Read the House of Lords report here
Of the 30 slowest streets, 11 (37%) have superfast availability, according to the BT and Virgin Media postcode availability checker on 24th February 2015
On average, including line rental costs, superfast fibre broadband costs £29.25 per month compared to £20.23 for non-fibre, a difference of £9.02 per month. Figures taken for the best available packages across the main providers on Uswitch.com in January 2015.
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