As Kevin Good, the Beach Manager, states: "Weymouth Beach is one of the forerunners of the traditional seaside resorts, going back to King George III. On a busy day we can be talking 20,000 people here."
Paul Clements, from TripAdvisor, writes:- "On Weymouth's famously golden sands, Punch and Judy still hammer it out several times a day, near the donkey rides and carousel. For a British beach holiday any more quintessential, you'd have to bring out the cucumber sandwiches while swatting away wasps with sticks and pink rock."
With intermittent 3G and 4G connectivity across the 2.5km beach, and wanting to offer guest Wi-Fi to help stimulate the local economy, West Dorset District Council turned to LAN3.
The Weymouth Beach project is one of six planned across Dorset as part of a Department for Culture Media and Sport initiative. The aim is to enhance digital connectivity along Dorset’s coast, thereby promoting and boosting the local economy. The Dorset Coastal Connections portfolio of 18 projects received funding from the Coastal Communities Fund, and is coordinated by Dorset Coast Forum.
David Staples, who works for West Dorset District Council and managed this project, said: "The Primary reason behind the expansion of Wi-Fi connectivity across Dorset is to provide better connectivity for members of the public in key public areas. These areas don't all have good coverage for 3G and 4G, and also gives local businesses a chance to utilise the Wi-Fi system for advertisement."
Cllr Richard Nickinson, Briefholder for Economic Development, said: “We recognise the increasing importance of being connected in this digital world. Both residents and visitors can benefit from instant connection to the internet using the free Wi-Fi. Why not use it to help you best enjoy your time in the town?"
LAN3 proposed an Aerohive wireless solution, featuring powerful outdoor wireless access points, designed to withstand the elements. Staples continued:- "I'd definitely recommend Aerohive. I think it's a really valuable solution, and it just works well. The fact that it's cloud managed as well is a big bonus because you can put up an Access Point literally anywhere, provided it has an internet connection it can talk to your HiveManager. You don't have to go out and purchase an expensive Wi-Fi management solution."
"From start-to-finish, LAN3 have been an excellent partner to work with on this. They assisted with the application for the funding, they undertook the site surveys and installation, not only right on budget, but if anything, a little bit quicker than I thought possible to do."
Beach Manager, Weymouth Beach
Summer 2018 will be remembered as the best in a generation, with the population flocking to beaches across the country to enjoy the record breaking temperatures.
With up to 20,000 people a day making use of the golden sands, the wireless was put through its paces from the off.
Kevin Good, Beach Manager, continued:- "At Weymouth Beach in summer it's very busy. If we're providing a hot spot that covers a radius of several hundred meters around a building, you could in theory have a lot of people connecting to the Wi-Fi at the same time, so we'd need a very fast interest connection to service all those connecting to it."
Staples concluded:- "Working with LAN3, they've always come across as a very professional organisation, very technically minded and they know how to deliver a project on time and correctly."