BT has rolled out of faster next generation broadband to more parts of the West Midlands, which the company said will “play a vital role in the future prosperity of the region”.

The service, delivered over copper wires, is already available in more than 160 West Midlands exchange areas.

The latest places to get faster speeds – up to 20 megabits per second – are the Beacon exchange area in Great Barr, Audley, Milford and Barton-Under-Needwood in Staffordshire, Broadway and Wythall in Worcestershire, Llanymynech, Oswestry and Pontesbury in Shropshire and Wellesbourne in Warwickshire.

BT also announced Broseley in Shropshire, Berkswell and Pelsall, as well as Tutbury in Staffordshire will be added to the faster broadband roll-out programme and upgraded later this year.

John Dovey, BT’s West Midlands regional director, said: “This major investment is playing a vital role in the future prosperity of the West Midlands.

“The technology is changing for the better the way we live and work, helping businesses work more efficiently and flexibly and find new markets.

“But there is still much work to be done and we want to work with the public sector to find solutions for even the most challenging locations.”

By next Spring around 88 per cent of homes and businesses in the region will be served by an exchange which has been upgraded to deliver these higher speeds.

The new service is available on an open, wholesale basis to all companies providing broadband.

The investment in the copper wire network is in addition to BT’s £2.5 billion roll-out of fibre-based broadband, which will bring even faster speeds to around two-thirds of UK premises by the end of 2014.