ALLIHIES is making an all-out bid to win an Eir competition to secure high-speed broadband.
There are 37 locations in Ireland competing to have a ‘Fibre to the Home’ broadband network provided at no cost to their community.
Allihies is one of five West Cork communities vying to win fibre rollout alongside Bere Island, Cape Clear, Coomhola & Borlin, and Goleen.
The Allihies Parish campaign has captured the public’s imagination with its use of video and social media posters to get the message across about how people’s lives are affected by digital poverty at the very tip of the Beara peninsula.
The village’s campaign video – which was made by Richie Hodges of Allihies-based balooz.com, with inputs from Dzogchen Beara, John Eagle and Marney O’Donoghue – features interviews with local farmers, fishermen, financial advisors, entrepreneurs and business owners, who increasingly rely on the internet to comply with industry regulations, monitor weather reports, and research their businesses so that they run them as efficiently as possible.
Atlantic Sea Salt is one of the local businesses supporting the campaign. The company believes more reliable communications would help them win sales in Ireland and further afield, and local campaign co-ordinators say other businesses have committed to moving to the area if the Allihies campaign is successful.
The campaign’s eye-catching video and posters on Twitter have caught national attention, and make the most of Allihies’ reputation as a colourful place in which to live and do business. The posters also feature local people, as well as major landmarks like the Dursey cable car and the village’s copper mines.
‘We were part of the industrial revolution, and we’d like to be part of the digital revolution too,’ said Aoife O’Sullivan, who is pushing the campaign.
‘Unfortunately, we are often in the ridiculous position of having to drive around to find phone reception so we can email and tweet the photos for the campaign. If this is what we can achieve with the very limited amount of internet access, then imagine what we could do if we had fibre rollout.’
To support the Allihies campaign and its bid to win the competition – the results of which will be announced by the end of October – check out #powerallihies and #fibrerollout.