Anyone else suffering from superslow broadband?
Amble homeowner Carl Donaldson contacted us with a complaint about poor broadband connectivity at the new Persimmon housing development. Other people have also told us they too have poor broadband connectivity issues in Amble and Hauxley. What’s your experience?
I’ve an interesting issue regarding Broadband at Coquet Grange. Basically Persimmon didn’t purchase a fibre to the cabinet (FTTC) street cabinet back when the site started.
Openreach won’t upgrade us as the development is still a commercial interest. Persimmon won’t upgrade us to a modern fibre cabinet. Therefore all residents share the single ADSL cabinet and as the site grows then the service is deteriorating.
Nobody from Openreach or Persimmon is interested in listening to the residents. At times you can’t run iplayer on the TV.
I spoke with the Gazette who told me that a similar issue at Alnwick was resolved with Councillors pressuring developers and Openreach, but I’m not sure where is the best place to start with that. We were told there was broadband when we purchased, but like many others there we expected that to be FTTC Superfast, which it isn’t.
The Ambler contacted Nathan Fuller, Support Officer for Northumberland County Council‘s iNorthumberland service, who gave us this reply:
Unfortunately Persimmon is not prepared to fund the upgrade to fibre. In the Alnwick example Taylor Wimpey agreed with Openreach to fund the costs of upgrading. We have similar examples in Morpeth with Taylor Wimpey and Bellway doing the same.
At present there is nothing we can do with public funds to address the issue, if Persimmon is unwilling to pay the only other option I can think of is for residents to look at paying. I don’t know the costs of this cabinet, but we have others in a similar situation which have been quoted under £10,000 for an upgrade. I know this isn’t ideal but you will see from www.inorthumberland.org.uk/move that this is an issue across the country.
I did raise this issue with an alternative supplier (Alncom, based in Alnwick) who may be interested in offering a superfast wireless service to the estate if there is sufficient demand from residents.
We did put up signs last year next to the site encouraging people to check fibre availability before buying in the hope that enough queries or loss of sales would encourage the developer to agree to offer the service, but there is nothing we can do formally.
I appreciate this isn’t the answer you were probably hoping for, but we are happy to try and help where possible.
Project Support Officer ,Information Services
Editor’s note: we got Carl Donaldson’s name wrong in the print version of this article. We apologise for any confusion.