Wenhaston: Last three BT customers wait for fault repair

Residents of Wenhaston affected by the recent BT connection problems met to share their frustration

Residents of Wenhaston affected by the recent BT connection problems met to share their frustration - Credit: Archant

A GROUP of villagers have shared their displeasure at being cut off by a series of delayed repairs to faulty phone and internet services.

Residents of Wenhaston, near Halesworth, met to share their anger at being disconnected for up to several weeks following a major underground cable fault.

Just three customers currently remain offline - two losing communication after attempts were made by BT engineers to fix the initial fault.

One homeowner, whose service has now been restored, found eight phone messages from the company left while the line was still inoperative.

The problems started at the beginning of March for some customers, including deaf 88-year-old Derek Newby, who has since been reconnected after more than a month.

But Patricia Allen’s line has remained dead since March 21 - the same day engineers first attempted to remedy the problem.

BT said it hoped to fix the remaining faults by the start of next week - but villagers have developed a jaded scepticism since the problem was first diagnosed in a 130-metre stretch of cable.

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Liz Hill, who has been back online since Tuesday, said: “We want to keep the pressure up and will be meeting again next week.

“My mobile phone bill has gone through the roof and we bought to new phones thinking that was the cause of the problem. I want to be refunded for that - more than that, I want my time back. I’ve been doing their job by chasing for answers.

“Eight of the 10 messages I found on my phone were from BT. It beggars belief.”

BT has made repeated apologies for the delays, saying that engineers replaced the damaged section of cabling but found the lines were still faulty, and that further tests uncovered a need for more work due to previously undetectable faulty sections of cabling.

Suffolk Coastal MP Therese Coffey said BT had assured her it hoped to get the faults fully fixed by the start of next week, adding: “This problem has been going on longer than it should. I have been pressing BT regularly to get the lines fixed and service restored for Mr Newby and other Wenhaston residents.”

A BT spokesman said: “We are aware of other faults - unconnected to the original fault - in cable about 90 metres away. We hope to have service restored. This is a complex fault under a busy road.”

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