Driving To Deliver Your Business

Miserden, the UK village with worse internet than Mount Everest …

A beautiful place to live but not to surf the web. Photograph: Alamy

Name: Miserden, Gloucestershire.

Age: Old enough to be mentioned in the Domesday Book which was completed in 1086 under its former name, Greenhampstead.

Appearance: The living embodiment of nominative determinism.

I can t remember what nominative determinism is. Let me Google that. Hold up a second. Before you Google anything, do you live in Miserden?

I do, yes. Then don t bother Googling anything. Walk to a library and look it up instead. It ll be so much quicker, I promise.

But the nearest library is four miles away. It ll take me 90 minutes to walk there. Listen to me. It ll still be quicker.

Why s that? Because Miserden has officially the UK s stingiest broadband download speeds, that s why. Tests have shown[1] that the local population endures an average speed of 1.3Mbps. One especially unlucky resident there even recorded a speed of 0.12Mbps.

Is that slow? Given that the average speed in the UK is 22.8Mbps[2], it s incredibly slow. It would take you about 11 hours to download a film. That s literally almost twice as long as it would take on Mount Everest.

That doesn t seem fair. It s not. Although Miserden is the worst, there are several of these rural blackspots around the country. The risk is that everyone will eventually move out of these areas, because they won t be able to email their family or watch that YouTube video of the sneezing panda[3].

Oi, spoilers! I ve been trying to download that video for the past three hours! Have you got to the bit where the panda looks as if it s about to sneeze?

No. See what a mess this is? Most of the country takes reliable, high-speed internet for granted, and basic neglect like this risks turning some of our prettiest villages into ghost towns.

It s OK. We persevere. Wait a minute, are you reading this online?

I am, yes. When are you reading this?

Well, I started loading the page the second it was published, so it s now October 2018. Oh, wow, you re from the future. Say hello to President Trump for me!

Do say: Access to the internet is a fundamental human right.

Don t say: How am I going to get all my cat gifs now? Go outside and look at a cat? Yuck.


  1. ^ Tests have shown (www.cable.co.uk)
  2. ^ average speed in the UK is 22.8Mbps (stakeholders.ofcom.org.uk)
  3. ^ that YouTube video of the sneezing panda (www.youtube.com)

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