Hull reaches broadband milestone as KCOM announces growth in fibre customers
The digital revolution has reached a pivotal moment in Hull as more people are using full fibre broadband than standard copper connections for the first time.
New Fruit Market development in Hull has brilliant Lightstream broadband
What is the first thing children say when they reach their holiday destination?
Is it, “Wow Mum, look at the views” or “That journey just flew by, I can’t wait to go out and explore”?
No. As any modern parent will know the first thing any youngster says after plonking down their suitcase is “What’s the Wi-Fi code?”
So, when you’re building a prestigious new development of high-end apartments in Hull’s renaissance cultural quarter, one of the first things on your list of essentials is brilliant internet access.
“That’s the first things kids want isn’t it?” laughs Kenny Keegan, MD of Prople – the developers behind the new high-end Egremont Russet serviced apartments in Hull’s flourishing Fruit Market.
“Mum, what’s the Wi-Fi code? I want to log on with my iPad.
“It’s the same with business travellers. The first thing they look for is the Wi-Fi so they can get on with their work. It’s an essential part of life now. People have to be online to do what they need to do. That’s why we’ve got Lightstream to every apartment we’ve built here so whether people are travelling for business or pleasure we’ve got what they need.
“Everybody wants Netflix don’t they? That’s why we’ve got Netflix, Amazon and Smart TVs in every room. The broadband makes that possible.”
In a nod to local history, the multi-million pound Egremont Russet development is named after a variety of dessert apple, sitting as it does squarely in the middle of Hull’s old Fruit Market.
Here it’s sandwiched between the city’s picturesque Marina and the jutting new tech hub of the C4DI building. To the north a new “urban village” of town houses and squares with restored historic names is taking shape.
Along the adjoining Humber Street a raft of new restaurants, arts galleries, shops and bars have taken up residence – all within a stone’s throw of the new apartments and ideal for anyone looking to unwind after a day at the office or days exploring the city.
The broadband is just one aspect of Prople’s attention to detail that it hopes will be its USP for visiting business contractors to the burgeoning tech and green energy companies nearby as well as Hull’s growing number of tourists.
As well as ensuring visitors’ broadband requirements are met, Prople - the nifty name comes from bringing property and people together - have fitted the same £5,000 beds that they use at London’s famous Claridges Hotel while each suite is individually designed with plush sofas, retro chic furniture and work by local artists on prominent display.
“The feel we’re going for is that of a five star hotel,” says Kenny.
“It’s in such a cool, funky area that we wanted to reflect that in the apartments. We want them all to have that feeling of luxury but have that individuality and be distinct from each other.
“We’re offering the full package.”
There’s a feeling of plush luxury pervading the 19 one and two-bedroom suites. Twelve of the apartments have been bought outright by investors while the remaining seven are now available to crowd-funding investors. Investors can invest between £2,000 and £10,000 in the apartments for a share of the company operating the building, offering a dividend of 8 per cent.
“By going the crowd-funding route we’re opening up the opportunity of investing in property to more people than ever before,” says Kenny.
“It’s a chance to invest in a property in one of the most exciting areas of development not just in Hull but in the whole country. It’s an exciting time to be in Hull at the moment; with the growth in the green energy industry in think we are at the beginning of a real resurgence for the area.”