Lightning strikes Kent

21 April 2017

Ultrafast broadband boost for up to 108,000 premises

Virgin Media today announced that homes and businesses in Kent will be next to benefit from an ultrafast broadband and entertainment boost.

As part of its Project Lightning expansion, Virgin Media plans to extend its fibre optic network to up to 108,000 homes and businesses across Kent. This has the potential to transform the quality of broadband in a county where the average download speed is just 18Mbps.

Those who wish to take Virgin Media’s internet services will be connected to ultrafast broadband with entry level download speeds of 100Mbps, and reaching up to 300Mbps for residents and 350Mbps for small businesses.

Work has already begun in Ashford to connect up to 8,000 new premises and is expected to be completed across the county before the end of 2018.

Residents can also benefit from the latest entertainment with the brand new smallest, smartest, fastest, 4k-ready Virgin TV V6 set-top box, with the ability to stream live TV, recordings, on demand shows and movies around the home. Plus, there is lots of great programming with up to 245 TV channels (including 50 HD channels) with Sky Sports, Sky Movies, BT Sport and Netflix, as well as an extensive TV on demand library of TV box sets and movies. As well as access to brand new TV shows such as Ash vs Evil Dead, Kingdom, Magic City, Billy & Billie, Full Circle and Imposters – exclusive to Virgin Media TV customers.

Residents can also benefit from Virgin Mobile’s recently revamped services - bringing fast 4G connectivity, free Whatsapp and Facebook Messenger, as well as the ability to rollover unused data each month.

Neil Bartholomew, Regional Director for the South East at Virgin Media, said: “We’re delighted to be expanding our network to tens of thousands more homes and businesses to help to make Kent a world class digital hotspot. Local residents and businesses will soon be getting the high-speed connectivity they deserve. We urge more people to come together and register their interest - your street could be next.”

Rt Hon Damian Green, MP for Ashford & Secretary of State for Work & Pensions, said: “Ultrafast broadband is a huge boon to businesses and domestic customers, and I am delighted that it will become more widely available in Ashford. This is what is needed to make our area even more successful in the future.”

Cllr Gerry Clarkson, Leader of Ashford Borough Council, said: “A growing town like Ashford needs the very best modern technology and we are delighted Virgin Media have chosen our borough for such a significant digital infrastructure investment which will mean we will have some of the best broadband access in the country. This will make a big difference for our residents and businesses, making it easier, faster and more efficient to connect.

“The Council understands the significance of this type of broadband investment and Ashford has been at the forefront of pushing the fibre agenda. Its importance cannot be underestimated, which is why our Local Plan to 2030 includes an innovative Fibre to the Premises policy, ensuring all new developments in Ashford will benefit from this vital infrastructure and paving the way for similar policies within all local plans.”

Backed by parent company Liberty Global, Virgin Media is investing £3bn to extend its ultrafast fibre broadband network to an additional 4 million premises, to reach a total of 17 million homes and businesses.

As network expansion continues across the country, Virgin Media calls for more people to register interest at


Notes to Editors

The average (median) broadband speed in Kent County Council is 18Mbps. Source: Ofcom, Connected Nations Report 2016, published February 2017.

Ultrafast broadband up to 300Mbps

For residents, Virgin Media’s Vivid 300 broadband offers the fastest widely available broadband – with download speeds of up to 300Mbps. This is four times faster than Virgin Media’s main competitors’ top speeds and gives households more bandwidth to stream, game, chat and work all at the same time on multiple connected devices.

For small businesses, Virgin Media Business now offers ultrafast connectivity, with speeds of up to 350Mbps as standard – almost four times faster than its main competitors’ widely available top speeds. This enables businesses to reach their potential by delivering better services and greater capacity.

Virgin TV V6 box, powered by TiVo

The new Virgin TV V6 box is Virgin Media’s smallest, smartest and fastest box yet. It is half the size of the previous TiVo box with 10x the power and packed with a load of extra features. It allows people to record six programmes while watching a seventh recording or stream from services such as iPlayer or Netflix. The Virgin TV V6 box is designed so that recordings can be accessed and streamed on other TiVo boxes around the home and support 4K Ultra-High Definition (UHD) TV with Netflix and YouTube available in 4K from launch and more programming coming soon.

Fast 4G mobile connectivity

Virgin Mobile was the world’s first virtual mobile operator when it launched in 1999. It is one of the largest MVNOs in the UK with 3 million subscribers. Instead of owning mobile infrastructure, Virgin Mobile uses infrastructure provided on a wholesale basis by network operator EE. In November 2016 Virgin Mobile launched 4G in the UK, combined with innovative new services that give customers free messaging on WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger and the ability to “rollover” unused data.

For more product information, visit

Press contacts

Verity Henderson and Ben Lyons, Virgin Media

0333 000 2900 | | @VirginMediaCorp

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