Mayfair and Belgravia are about to get free public wifi

Emma Haslett
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Addresses across Mayfair will get faster broadband (Source: Getty)

Hedge fund managers, rejoice: not only is your wifi is about to speed up dramatically, but the public are about to get access to free, super-fast wifi in the area, after one of the biggest landlords in the West End joined forces with Openreach.

Grosvenor, which owns properties in London's hedge fund district, with addresses on Mayfair's Mount Street and Grosvenor Square, said it plans to spend £2m over five years improving broadband speeds in Mayfair and Belgravia.

The company said the investment will improve broadband, wifi and mobile connections, creating download speeds it reckons are 200 times faster than the average in the UK across 600 homes and businesses, and increasing speeds of up to 80 Mbps across hundreds more properties.

It will also roll out free wifi giving the public access to speeds of up to 300 Mpbs.

The area has been listed among the worst performing five per cent in the UK for broadband speeds, but Grosvenor said the investment will take it into the top five per cent.

The move is part of the landlord's 20-year vision for the ultra-exclusive neighbourhoods, which wants to make Mayfair and Belgravia "more active and more appealing to all".

"We have a 20 year vision that our London estate, at the heart of the West End, works harder for its communities and all Londoners by adapting - with better streets, greener spaces and more active and enterprising places that appeal to the many," said Will Bax, executive director for Grosvenor's London estate.

“We want to build a much larger full fibre network across the UK, and with the right conditions we believe we could make FTTP available to as many as 10 million homes and businesses by the mid-2020s – but the engineering, commercial and operational challenges are significant," added Kim Mears, managing director for infrastructure delivery at Openreach.

“There’s no doubt that greater collaboration will help us to overcome these challenges, so we’re working closely with landowners, developers, Communications Providers and government to achieve that. Co-investment models like this one are part of the answer, and we’re keen to replicate this with other landowners and developers throughout the UK.”

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