Free WiFi plan for Kettering town centre

Birdseye View: Kettering: Views of Kettering from the spire of Ss Peter and Paul, Market Place
Kettering Market Place and High St
Monday June 5th 2017 NNL-170506-204716009
Birdseye View: Kettering: Views of Kettering from the spire of Ss Peter and Paul, Market Place Kettering Market Place and High St Monday June 5th 2017 NNL-170506-204716009

Shoppers in Kettering could soon be able to connect to free WiFi in the town centre.

Kettering Council is proposing to introduce a public WiFi system for shoppers and visitors.

They say it could maintain and increase footfall in the town centre, with research suggesting 24 per cent of people would stay for longer if there was free WiFi.

A report set to go to the council’s executive committee tomorrow (Wednesday) said: “This could help residents and visitors connect with local business whilst staying in touch with events and promoting local opportunities.

“There are also potential advertising opportunities to be explored.

“Once registered, users can receive information on car parking, shopping discounts, forthcoming events and other town centre news.”

The council says introducing the WiFi would bring a number of benefits including harnessing marketing initiatives, using data for events and saving costs for residents and businesses.

However, they admit the emergence of 5G data and running costs are drawbacks.

The project would require a £35,000 capital contribution and an ongoing revenue commitment of about £5,000.

The report added: “This is obviously a new item within the council’s budget and needs to be factored into the overall budget strategy.”

Corby became the first town centre in the county to introduce public WiFi in 2013.

A future proposal would also be created for the A6 towns.

Councillors have been recommended to agree in principle to the idea of a public WiFi system and seek tenders for the provision of the system.

The meeting starts at 6.30pm in the Committee Room at Kettering Council’s offices tomorrow (October 18).