Bear Staff Help to Connect Rural Community

A POPULAR COUNTRY pub is pulling in the customers with the pints thanks to a ground-breaking initiative to get reliable mobile phone signals in rural communities.

Mobile phone company Vodafone has been working with the Bear and Ragged Staff in Bransford to trial a phone signal-boosting technology which helps to give better connections in rural areas.

The signal booster, which is now installed permanently at the popular pub, gives enhanced 3G signals to pub customers.

The technology will get an extra trial next weekend (July 31) when hundreds of local people visit the popular BearFest music festival raising money for the Midlands Air Ambulance.

West Worcestershire MP Harriett Baldwin this week (Friday July 22) joined pub owner Lynda Williams to find out more about the Vodafone community hub project.

Harriett has been working with all the major mobile phone operators to try to deliver enhanced connections to rural areas like Bransford and the Vodafone project is one of a number of local initiatives to get better signals for all phone users.

Harriett commented: “Good internet and phone connections are vital for a popular pub like the Bear and Ragged Staff and this project seems very popular both for the business itself but also regular and new customers.

“More and more people want to stay in touch wherever they are so I welcome these projects which help to get decent signals into areas that have lost out in the past.

“The technology will face a great test when hundreds of people turn up for the BearFest music event next week and I look forward to seeing tweets, videos and pictures online showing people having a great time in Bransford.

“I encourage other local communities to consider setting up a digital hub like this one to get more people online whilst out and about.”