AS Covid-19 means many of us are working and socialising from home, we depend more than ever on a reliable internet connection.

And even as lockdown measures begin to ease, those reluctant to resume long commutes may choose to shun their office for good.

But an analysis of broadband quality in Southampton shows this could be easier for some than others.

The House of Commons Library has produced estimates of average download speeds for individual areas within each parliamentary constituency across the UK.

In Southampton Itchen, the fastest area was Townhill Park, where the average download speed was 79.5 megabits per second in May 2019, when the data was recorded.

This was higher than the UK average of 60.9.

In Southampton Test, the fastest area was Redbridge and Millbrook West, where the average download speed was 88.0 megabits per second in May 2019, when the data was recorded.

At the other end of the scale, the area of Newtown and Nicholstown saw an average speed of 64.4.

It means even Central Southampton East was above regular Ofcom’s definition of “superfast” downloads, which it defines as at least 30 Mbps.

The figures reflect speeds received rather than those available, as some people may have access to faster connections than the ones they pay


In Townhill Park, 99% of premises were capable of receiving superfast download speeds in January, whether or not they were using such a service.

Meanwhile, virtually all premises were able to receive 10 Mbps download speeds or 1 Mbps for uploads, which Ofcom deems the minimum requirement for “decent broadband”.

The Government recently wrote into law the right to request this level of service, with Ofcom estimating in December that roughly 155,000 premises across the UK could be in line to claim.

In Central Southampton East, 4% of premises were unable to get decent service, while 87% had access to superfast download speeds.

An Ofcom spokesman said: “More than nine in 10 UK households can now get superfast broadband, but some areas still struggle for a decent connection.

“Since March, anyone who is unable to get a decent broadband service has the legal right to request one.”

A Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport spokesman said the Government is committed to bringing faster, gigabit-speed internet to the whole country – one gigabit is equal to 1,000 megabits.”