Census: 23,000 homes in the North West don’t have internet access

Almost ten per cent of homes across Donegal, Sligo and Leitrim still don’t have internet access.

The most recent set of figures from Census 2016, just released reveal that of a population of 257,000 people in the region – 23,000 don’t have online access.

In County Donegal, 14,561 households do not have internet access despite more than 35,540 having a personal computer.

Of 16,340 households in Sligo with a personal computer, more than 5,500 do not have the internet.

And in Leitrim, where 7,972 households have a computer, more than 3,400 are without internet access.

The numbers of households with and without personal computers also makes interesting reading.

In Donegal, more than 20,800 do not have one, while the figure is 7,700 in Sligo and 4,100 in Leitrim.

The figures bring home the problem for those living in the north west when it comes to internet availability, now an essential requirement for households, businesses, farmers, schools, students and other service providers.

And for an area where many elderly live, often alone and in rural areas, it’s particularly difficult as there are more demands for transactions such as form-filling, bill-paying and banking to be done online.