Virgin Media in multi-million pound ultrafast broadband boost for Northern Ireland

3 August 2017

Ultrafast broadband to up to 50,000 properties in 2017

Speeds over 12 times faster than the average in Northern Ireland

Virgin Media today announced that homes and businesses in Northern Ireland will be next to benefit from an ultrafast broadband and entertainment boost as part of its £3bn investment programme, Project Lightning.

As it kicks off its Project Lightning expansion in Northern Ireland, Virgin Media plans to extend its ultrafast network to up to 50,000 properties in 2017. This has the potential to transform the quality of broadband in Northern Ireland, where average download speeds are just 23.8Mbps.*

Work has already begun in communities including Ballykelly, Bangor, Limavady, Newtownards, Strabane and Artigarvan with customers benefitting from ultrafast speeds.

Tony Hanway, CEO of Virgin Media Ireland, said:

> Families and businesses – from Bangor to Ballykelly- will soon benefit from ultrafast broadband 12 times faster than the average speed available today.

Virgin Media stands ready to invest in Northern Ireland, without subsidy from Stormont, London or Brussels.  But, like any major infrastructure investment, we need support from local authorities and Government to cut through red-tape so we can connect more homes and businesses more quickly.

Those who wish to take Virgin Fibre’s internet services will be connected to ultrafast broadband with entry level download speeds of 100Mbps, reaching up to 300Mbps for residents and download speeds of 350Mbps for small businesses. This means that speeds on Virgin Fibre’s lowest tier are over four times as fast as average speeds in Northern Ireland. 

Faster speeds also make it possible to stream ultra-high-definition TV, with local residents able to benefit from the latest entertainment on Virgin TV’s new smallest, smartest, fastest, 4k-ready Virgin TV V6 set-top box. The box has the ability to stream live TV, recordings, on demand shows and movies around the home. This is on top of great programming with up to 245 TV channels (including 50 HD channels) with all the football available in one place, including Sky Sports and BT Sport. Virgin Media also offers Sky Movies and Netflix, as well as an extensive on demand library of TV box sets and movies, and access to exclusive new TV shows such as Ash vs Evil Dead and Kingdom.

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

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 UK, Virgin Media calls for more people to register interest at:


Notes to Editors

*The average (median) broadband speed in Northern Ireland is 23.8Mbps. 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

James Lusher, Virgin Media

0333 000 2900,, @VirginMediaCorp