5G Innovation Region England’s Connected Heartland launches new website

July 3, 2024

A 5G Innovation Region programme co-ordinated by the Digital Infrastructure team at Oxfordshire County Council has launched its website.

The 5G Innovation Region, called England’s Connected Heartland (ECH), brings together local authorities in Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Central Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, and Oxfordshire with a mission to accelerate advanced wireless adoption across the region.

The website’s purpose is to inform diverse audiences—telecom suppliers, local businesses, government entities at various levels, and other regions—about our projects and the transformative power of advanced wireless technology.

ECH’s implementation projects – designed to be replicable within the ECH region and across the UK – are focused on two vertical markets: Advanced Manufacturing and Transport/Rail. These industries can benefit significantly from advanced wireless connectivity; see the ECH website page on the benefits of 5G to find out more about the benefits. All of these benefits, such as operational efficiency, contribute to the broader goal of improving the economic prosperity of the region.

The website features information about the two implementation projects of ECH:

  • 5G Science and Innovation Campuses Project: ECH is working with stakeholders and suppliers to procure a managed private 5G network for significant parts of the Harwell Science and Innovation Campus, the world-renowned 700-acre science and technology park in Oxfordshire. This will provide a secure, business-grade wireless network for residents, while simultaneously scoping and documenting a common set of requirements for deploying across other science or innovation parks.
  • 5G Rail Project: ECH will be delivering connected trackside private 5G along East West Rail, a new section of rail network under construction between Bicester and Bletchley. This will provide better connectivity for passengers and other railway users, and will also open up opportunities to connect public services providers and rural businesses in traditional not-spots.

The website also features information about other activities as part of ECH:

  • Innovation Exchange: ECH is creating a network of businesses, suppliers, and government to strengthen and build the advanced wireless connectivity market in the region. The network, called the Innovation Exchange, is there to support, inform, and connect members. Those interested in joining the Innovation Exchange network can sign up on the ECH website.
  • Grant Scheme: ECH will be running a Grant Scheme in the near future. More information about the scheme, with a transparent application and evaluation process, will be communicated on the ECH website.

Explore the website to find out more: https://englandsconnectedheartland.co.uk/

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