A campaign has begun to bring free public wifi to Harlow town centre, after local MP Robert Halfon to help him deliver his election pledge.
If the petition proves to be successful, the MP hope to roll out the free wifi project and it’s wifi routers ward by ward, until every member of his constituency has access to it.
Mr Halfon, who made the free wifi pledge shortly after retaining his seat in the recent general election, launched an online petition on Monday, aiming to garner support for his plans.
Mr Halfon said “Harlow is the birth place of fibre-optic technology. As such, I want every resident – especially those from lower incomes – to have access to free wifi across the town.
“Every Harlow resident, old or young, should have access to the internet and to not be inhibited by cost.”
“Free access to the internet via wifi would empower thousands of Harlow residents, looking for information, searching for jobs, and other opportunities.”
Speaking earlier this week, the newly appointed deputy chairman of the Conservative Party said “Free wifi is now available in many of the country’s great towns and cities, including Bishop’s Stortford, and so I am calling for it to be rolled out across Harlow, initially in the town centre, for the benefit of all residents.”
Six out of every ten people in the UK now access the internet via a mobile device, with recent studies showing this trend is set to continue, with the numbers of people access the web using their phone set to grow significantly over the coming years.
However, there are a number of factors, such as cost, internet speed, the projects range and what technology is required in terms of routers and wifi boosters, as well as the number of people who are likely to use it, all of which will dictate how the plan is put together and rolled out.
Added Mr Halfon “This petition urges all Harlow authorities, particularly our local councils, to work towards giving free wifi to all Harlow people, to engage business and our community to look at ways free wifi can be achieved, starting with a roll out in the town centre and extended ward by ward.”
“We should all champion Harlow and I will work hard to ensure that all Harlow residents, particularly lower earners, can get the power of the internet at no cost.”
Mr Halfonn is appealing to all local Harlow residents to sign the petition, hoping this will help to get him enough signatures to push forward with his plans.
“I have set up an online petition which I encourage everyone to sign so that we can get free wifi in the town centre as soon as possible. I will work with the local authorities, particularly Harlow council, to deliver what is needed to bring about this change,” he added.
The petition is available to sign now over at change.org.