THE county councillor responsible for broadband says Oxfordshire has been “short changed” in the Government money to bring super-fast connections to 90 per cent of the county’s homes.

The Government’s Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) announced it would invest £3.86m in upgrading broadband links in rural Oxfordshire to reach the goal, but said it must be match-funded by County Hall and private companies.

But David Robertson, who said it would cost £20m to provide speeds of 24Mbps to 90 per cent of homes and 2Mbps to everybody, claimed he had been expecting more than £6m from ministers.

And he said the council would still have to wait for BDUK to draw up its procurement framework next year before the funding was assured.

Mr Robertson said: “The county council, as part of its budget, will be putting in an amount of money to look at match-funding for broadband, but that will have to take its place alongside other priorities. It is in no way a done deal.”

He added: “We were expecting more than this. We have been shortchanged by what we have got from BDUK.”

Under the funding formula, the Government would provide 25 per of the costs, matched by the county council, with private companies giving the rest of the money.

Wantage MP and Digital Minister Ed Vaizey said the £3.86m would be used to “fill in the gaps” in the current broadband coverage, much of which was being upgraded by BT.

He added: “We worked the funding out very carefully to give the kind of money needed to fill in the gaps.

“Although those people who do not have fast broadband may let out a hollow laugh, in fact a lot of Oxfordshire is already well covered.”

But Oxfordshire MEP James Elles described the Government’s £530 million package as “a drop in the ocean”.

The Tory politician said: “It is totally inadequate.

“At the moment, it is a total nightmare for local people who have inadequate infrastructure for the 21st century.”

He warned Britain was lagging behind countries such as South Korea, where the Government was fitting every home with 100Mbps connections.

And digital consultant Hugo Pickering, who is behind a £12m scheme to introduce 100Mbps speeds to 3,000 homes in West Oxfordshire, said: “The money is not going to be sufficient by any means at all. It is impossible to meet the target.

“We may reach the universal commitment (for 2Mbps speeds) with that sort of funding, but only on a wing and a prayer.

“It does not go far enough and it does not go deep enough.”