Complaints Mire Cityfibre’s Peterborough FTTH Broadband Rollout

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Cityfibre’s £30m deployment of a new 1Gbps capable Fibre-to-the-Home (FTTH) broadband ISP network in Peterborough (Cambridgeshire) has suffered complaints after the City Councillor for Park ward, John Peach, highlighted some “absolutely atrocious” reinstatement work.

Apparently the councillor had received a number of complaints from residents around Dogsthorpe Road, which are said to reflect the quality of repairs to pavements in that area. John Peach told Peterborough Today (see for picture) that tarmac on the pavement had been left with lots of gaps, holes and was unevenly laid.

Some of the repairs have been found to be like a temporary reinstatement, awaiting a permanent repair,” said Mr Peach. In response the council have pledged to inspect the work, although Cityfibre has already noted that they aren’t yet finished in the area and a full repair is still due to take place. To be fair, it looks from the picture like a standard work-in-progress repair.

Rebecca Stephens, CityFibre’s Local Development Manager, said:

“Working in partnership with Vodafone and Peterborough City Council, we are making real progress with our construction programme. Our contractor is laying the final connections on Dogsthorpe Road, and once this is completed full reinstatement works will be carried out.

While the nature of the project means some disruption is unavoidable, we are doing everything we can to minimise this and will continue to keep residents up-to-date with our plans.”

Deploying new infrastructure is an expensive business and will inevitably create periods of disruption for local residents, which is often true no matter who is doing the noisy civil engineering side of things. Over the years we’ve seen similar gripes being levelled against Openreach, Virgin Media and various others.

The ramp-up in UK FTTP deployment plans and growing possibility of overbuild between rival ISP networks also means that we can probably expect to see a lot more gripes like this in the future. In the long run the ability to access affordable 1Gbps broadband speeds should make it all worthwhile and may even boost the value of local housing, as well as the economy.

Nevertheless operators do still have a clear responsibility to finish the work properly and, for the most part, they do take action when problems are identified.

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