Virgin Media O2 have announced it has connected Romsey to their Gigabit Speeds Network along with 12 other small towns or rural villages.

Broadband will now be 20 times faster than the local average and enable users to send and receive large files, download TV shows, films and computer games in seconds.

Thousands of homes can access the new network, offering average speeds of 1,130Mbps where some residents in rural villages had just 2Mbps.

Caroline Nokes, MP for Romsey and Southampton North said: “I know how much fast broadband matters to local residents, as well as being able to choose who supplies to them. Virgin Media O2 has worked really hard on their initiatives in this area to bring faster broadband to some of the villages, and it is great to see this extended roll out of Gig 1.”

Lutz Schüler, Chief Executive Officer at Virgin Media O2, said: “We are upgrading the UK to next-generation connectivity and today we’re hitting another important milestone with more than half of our network now able to access gigabit speeds.”

Other towns and villages to benefit include Andover, Michelmersh, North Baddesley, Test Valley and Timsbury.

The gigabit expansion was highlighted in Ofcom’s latest Connected Nations report as a key driver behind the 37% increase in homes now having access to gigabit speeds compared to last year.