Wi-fi tractor to bring free broadband to Holme Moss for Tour De France

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A hi-tech tractor will bring wi-fi broadband to Tour de France visitors.

Up to 60,000 people are expected to descend on Holme Moss for one of the Grand Depart’s iconic climbs.

And now a tractor, sponsored by the National Farmers’ Union (NFU), will bring free wi-fi to the Tour masses.

The tractor will be parked up in the village of Holme at the foot of the Moss climb.

The mobile hotspot will cover about half-a-mile.

The NFU teamed up with Massey Ferguson and satellite broadband company Avonline to connect up four locations over the two days of the Grand Depart.

Two tractors have been wired up for four of the busiest locations.

On day one a tractor will park up at the Yorkshire Dales National Park Visitor Centre in Hawes where 5,000 people are expected.

The other will be at the Visitor Centre in Grassington, where National Park staff are expecting to welcome around 3,000 people.

For stage two – which comes through Calderdale and Kirklees – one tractor will head to Holme while the other will go to the Steel Stage event at High Bradfield near Sheffield.

NFU regional director Richard Pearson said: “We are really excited about this project and we hope it will add to people’s enjoyment of what will be an amazing event.

“Farmers across Yorkshire are gearing up to welcome tens of thousands of people for the Tour, showcasing the fabulous food and scenery for which the county is famous.

“But as our members know only too well, getting internet access can be a tricky business out in the countryside. It’s something they grapple with every day whether they’re registering online animal movements or simply engaging with the public on Twitter or Facebook.

“It’s obvious spectators will want to use their phones to access visitor information and post pictures, tweets and so on.

“As we understand how frustrating a lack of broadband in rural areas can be, we wondered if this was something we could help with.”

Mark Wynn, of Avonline Broadband, said satellite broadband could deliver fast broadband even in remote areas.

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