It's a wonderful life living and working in the Wolds. But there is one short-fall, poor internet coverage, making it very difficult for small businesses to compete in markets that require the use of ecommerce websites and social media.
Taking a step closer to reducing this digital divide in the Wolds, following on from investment by Lord Halifax at The Garrowby Estate, where a suitable internet connection has been provided to people living in the area.
One small business in particular has noticed a huge boost following the installation of the wireless infrastructure at Garrowby. Robert E Fuller Gallery in Thixendale is the workshop of one of Britain's foremost wildlife artists, whose life-long passion for the natural world was shaped by his upbringing on a farm in the Yorkshire Wolds.
Robert's paintings sell all over the world and his trademark, highly-detailed images have been adopted at home by the RSPB and the National Trust and the gallery draws on average 7,000 people to visit each year.
The business had been victim to the digital divide, paying £500 per month for satellite internet until the mast at Garrowby Estate enabled Quickline to install a repeater site to reach Thixendale.
Victoria Fuller, manager of the gallery says: "Initially, Quickline's installation team couldn't get a clear line of site to the gallery from the Garrowby Estate, due to our surroundings. So they built a repeater mast at a farmhouse a short distance away and once the site was live, the engineers set us up in just a couple of hours."
"The connection is very reliable and has made a huge difference to the way we run our business. We are now able to upload large video files to send to TV companies and journalists, as well as being able to manage several different social media sites including YouTube. We also communicate much more effectively with sharing files to printers and suppliers. Overall, now that we have faster broadband we can streamline our business."
Hayley Silvester from Quickline says:
"There are many rural businesses like Robert E Fuller Gallery struggling to get online, but as a business we work with communities in Yorkshire and Lincolnshire to bring wireless internet to their premises. In this particular case, we worked with Halifax Estates to supply residents and businesses at Garrowby Estate near Pocklington. The mast covers the whole of the Estate giving coverage to even the most remote parts and now, we have extended this with additional repeater sites so the possibilities are endless."
"We are delighted that the Gallery has already noticed a huge difference in the way it operates and obviously they have been able to reduce their outgoings by hundreds of pounds each month."
"In addition, through the Better Broadband Delivery Scheme, Quickline is helping on average one hundred residential and business customers per month to get free installation using a voucher. Anyone who currently has broadband speeds of 2Mbps or less, could be eligible."