New stats assembled from the speedtest data of aggrieved men claim to have identified the best and worst spots in the country for download speeds, revealing the hell holes where average broadband speeds barely trickle over the 1Mbps mark.
Miserden in Gloucestershire has been outed as having the slowest average broadband connections in the UK, averaging a sorry and frustrating 1.30Mbps. Some poor residents of the town reported download speeds of just 0.12Mbps, barely enough to get today's rich media advertising frames to load.
The headline winner of the average speed battle is Rickmansworth in Hertfordshire, where the fortunate browsers of the commuter belt town luxuriate in average broadband speeds of a staggering 77.17Mbps -- and one extremely proud man recorded a vast 195Mbps maximum test result.
Of course, the stats fail to record the many super-rural lone houses that struggle to get over 0.5Mbps, or the smug looks on the faces of those with fibre who skew the averages upwards and make the rest of us feel inadequate.
These speeds have been assembled by test results aggregated by contract comparison site Cable.co.uk, whose boss Dan Howdle painted a grim picture for the future of the youth of Miserden, saying: "...it's not all about whether or not you can stream the latest Bond movie. Digital black holes like Ulverston, Miserden and others, unless addressed, will suffer steady economic decline as homes become less desirable, and businesses can no longer sustain themselves without an online presence. These often beautiful, scenic locations will become ghost towns."
We've had numerous people get in touch to question the data provided above, not least a spokesperson from BT who seems to think it's literally all nonsense and quite misleading. BT told us:
“This report doesn’t give an entirely accurate picture, as fibre broadband is widely available to two of the slowest areas identified. Fibre is available to 93 per cent of premises connected to Ulverston exchange and to 81 per cent of those connected to the Brent Knoll exchange - a far cry from the ‘digital black holes’ described."
“This report is either based on out-of-date information, or on the speeds people choose to buy rather than the maximum speeds available to them. For an accurate view, we’d encourage people to look at respected, independent reports by the likes of Ofcom, the EU, the International Telecommunication Union and ThinkBroadband."