Lisa Perkins, Adastral Park & Research Realisation Director, outlines some of the cutting-edge research and development taking place at BT’s Adastral Park base at Martlesham, close to Ipswich. 

She said: “As a company BT has always been about driving the change needed to keep people connected, but how we do that has shifted over time to make sure we are providing the platform and technology that is fit for the times we live in.   

“Whether that’s developing new technology, boosting infrastructure or collaborating with other businesses, academia and researchers our Adastral Park base in the East of England is central to that.   

“Adastral Park base is home to a thriving ecosystem made up of BT, Openreach and 150 businesses in the Innovation Martlesham tech cluster. The cluster was established as a way of bringing together a range of tech companies from start up to major players and right across network and digital technologies to work together, and providing a set up that caters to their needs.

“The park has become home to BT’s global Research and Development centre where researchers, academics and organisations can come together to innovate and create. It continues to lead the way in allowing us at BT to trial and showcase new technology, and demonstrate how it can benefit people and businesses across the UK and beyond.   

“Adastral Park has played a pivotal role in telecommunications research and has led to major developments including the creation of the world’s first quantum network to connect sites in London’s Docklands, the City and the M4 Corridor.  

"There is also a growing demand for people with skills in new technologies such as Artificial Intelligence and data science, which was showcased during the Robotics Festival which brought in speakers and exhibitors from major organisations from the Ministry of Defence to NASA.   

“We are leading the way in designing initiatives in the East of England which are designed to tackle some of the major skills challenges facing the area, and beyond. Our partnerships with the University of Suffolk and our collaboration with the DigiTech Centre mean we are uniquely placed to take on these challenges. 

"The continuing work here builds on a legacy of innovation and development at Adastral and ensures the East of England continues to be a major technology hub."