Towards the end of January received a card through the letterbox advertising that ultrafast Virgin Media broadband was now available in my area, as my combined broadband telephone from BT and TV from Sky were really quite expensive getting it all through VM looked quite attractive. I made some enquiries and was persuaded the the Volt ultimate package was the one for me, agreed on a 15th Mar installation date to give 31 day notice to BT & Sky was informed some engineers would do an inspection the week before.
Just a quick local description I live on a small estate of high end houses, my street has 10 houses 7 on the road and 3 including mine at the end of a 60 ish meter private drive/lane the lane is about 2/3 along the road my house and another of similar size sits on the left of the lane with a larger house opposite, the lane has a narrow grass verge on each side.
The BT hatch sits on the pavement about 5 meters to the right of the lane, the ducting appears to run down the right hand grass verge and through the end of my neighbour’s drive splitting off to connect to mine and the other house on the left.
A guy from Virgin turns the week before the 15th I show him where the BT point connects to the wall he marks that and the end of my drive with green spray, a couple of days later a van with some guys turn up dig a couple of holes expose the ducting find that they can’t pull trough, get verbal permission to dig a bit on my neighbours drive then declare there is a blockage somewhere between my neighbour’s drive and the BT hatch and can’t do anymore until they get written permission they fill in the holes and say someone will be in touch.
Now the saga begins
11/03/2022 1st email from VM installation on hold need permission of neighbour request contact details for neighbour, spoke with neighbour hereafter referee to as GN good neighbour, he provided his contact details but said he might need to run it past to his solicitor - contact details sent to VM by email.
14/03/2022 Emailed vm asking if there was any update, they replied still waiting for GN contact details, advised I had already sent this but will send it again, they confirmed they have received the details and sent the Wayleave forms.
15/03/2022. Email to vm asking if they had heard from my GN, they respond no still waiting, GN sent the permission back that evening.
16/03/2022 GN confirmed he had signed and returned permission, vm still say they are waiting permission.
18/03/2022. vm still say they have not received permission and have resent the form, GN says he had returned the signed form.
21/03/2022. Email vm they are still saying they have not received permission, I know GN has returned the signed form twice now.
21/03/2022. Email from vm informing that installation is now 04/04/2022 between 13:00 & 18:00
23/04/2022. Email to vm knowing that neighbour has sent permission twice now asking if it has been received and when a team will attend clear the blockage and pull the cable.
24/03/2022. Email from vm saying they have not heard anything from GN and have resent the documents today.
25/03/2022. Email to vm confirming that I had spoken to GN and he had sent the permission form.
28/03/2022. Email to vm, confirming that my neighbour had sent the permission form back he also gave me a copy which I scanned and sent with the email, this was now 4 times the signed form has been returned.
29/03/2022. Email from vm response to the above they confirm they have received the permission and my installation date is 04/04/2022.
29/03/2022. Email to vm asking about when the further work would be carried out - investigate and clear blockage so a cable could be pulled through ready for the installation on 04/04/2022 after all that was what the Wayleave permission was for and they confirmed they now had that.
29/03/2022. Email from vm in response to the above say GN neighbour had advised that the rubbish that was blocking the access had been removed.
This is completely false there was never any rubbish causing access problems, the problem is a blockage in the BT ducting they want to run a fibre cable through.
29/03/2022. Email to vm re above stating that was completely false there had never been any rubbish causing access problems and the work required was to investigate and clear a blockage then pull a cable through so installation could go ahead on 04/04/2022. Wanted someone to call my mobile and clarify this and confirm this work was going to be completed before the installation date, no one ever did.
30/03/2022. Email from vm re 04/04 they stated that the external and internal works would be completed on the same day for this type of installation and that there would be a site survey on 01/04/2022 to assess the work that needed to take place.
I guess that the original survey and the work carried out on 11/03/2022 that found the blockage or the wayleave permission they requested don’t count for anything.
30/03/2022. Email to vm gave a summary of the work or rather the lack of it since 11/03/2022 and what work was required to complete the installation.
31/03/2022. Email from vm thanking me for the email and saying they can see the installation is due on 04/04/2022 is to be completed by a team that specialises in completing installations that have failed due to issues with ducting and it will take place between 13:00 & 18:00 and they apologise for any inconvenience caused.
01/04/2022. Single guy in a vm van turns up, he is not quite sure what he is there for, agrees that there is indeed no cable pulled through so the guy turning up on 04/04/2022 will not be able to do anything, he said he would speak with his manager and that someone would be in contact and drove off after being at my property for about 10-15mins and he was only there that long as it took time to explain was had gone on so far.
Several phone calls to vm possibly to the pre-install team, it’s as if the people at the call centre just seem to want to send a survey or reschedule the installation or can’t accept there needs to be a cable fitted before it can be connected I was even transferred through to construction to be advised they do not deal with domestic installations, the guy I spoke with said he would fully update my records with what work is required. Just can’t seem to find who is responsible task the job.
04/04/2022. Installer duly turns up at 14:00 ish and goes oh there’s no cable fitted can’t do the installation after going through the explanation of the saga he gives me his mobile and said he would speak to his manager and call him if there is no progress by Friday I doubt there will be.
Got back onto pre-installation and again they could just not comprehend what the problem is, on a couple of the calls I was even told the cable had been installed, the job needs to be passed to the local contractors to turn up investigate and clear the blockage. The response was to reschedule the installation for 06/04/2022 and also a service request for 13:00- 18:00, the vm app showed both appointments.
04/04/2022. Email from vm informing me my installation was now 21/04/2022 between 13:00 - 18:00
Survey still showing as going ahead on 06/04/2022.
Getting to the point where I just give up might as well bite the bullet and go back to BT or Sky, have been without broadband since the 28th Mar.
05/04/2022. Wife spoke to a guy at the local vm sales office explained the situation and looking for help to try and find someone to talk to who might actually be able to help, they said they would email all the local managers and see if anyone was aware of the case and may know what was going on, we are not going to hold our breath about this though.
06/04/2022. Service visit this afternoon between 13;00 & 18;00 will try and talk with the guys manager this time.. wish me luck.