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Pre-installation overlooked existing cable <2m away. Wrongly say roadworks, permits and delay needed

On our wavelength

There is an existing unused VM cable on the wall between our house and next door, less than 2 metres away from the installation point.  All they have to do is drill a hole the wall and they're behind the TV.  

According to customer services the pre-installation survey has identified they need to dig up under tarmac and grass many metres and need council permits, and has so far delayed installation 4 times.

The survey obviously missed that there's already an (used) cable they could use. 

After the usual many hours in many calls and on hold, customer services claimed the pre-installation team had been out twice to have a look. If only they'd rung there door bell, they could've been shown where the existing cable is on the wall between the two properties. 

Every 2 weeks they say they're going to send the team again and will "update", but of course they don't call or email an update, so I have to call again. 

How can we actually get somebody sensible to act on the information about the existing cable?



Alessandro Volta

Posting a photo of what you are referring to might possibly help in your quest for a VM connection.

Other considerations which might help, or hinder, your case might be to do with the route the cable follows from the street. Does the cable run on your property or your neighbour's (which might have wayleave implications if it is not on your property)?

Do you know when/if the cable was last used? Plenty of topics on here involve a customer trying to use an existing cable only to find the cable is damaged and does not work.

On our wavelength

"Posting a photo...

Where?  Here?  Does somebody empowered from Virgin read these posts? Or are you doubting it's actually a VM cable (I'm not home at the moment, but it emerges from a flower bed in green outer sleeve and is wound up in a brown box with virgin media printed on it).

"Do you know when/if the cable was last used?"

No, but the neighbour's been there 10 years and hasn't used it.

"...trying to use an existing cable only to find the cable is damaged and does not work..."

That would be fair enough, if

a) somebody sensible/comprehensible would actually tell us that the people who came site found it, tested it and concluded they couldn't use it,.

b) it wasn't also the case that even if they couldn't use the existing cable, there isn't any public road or 3rd party property between the junction box in the ground (literally at the end of our short drive), and our property (i.e. can't be any permits required) 

Alessandro Volta

If you post a query on a community user forum you will get a range of replies from different people. Some replies will be from VM and some non-VM. I have no connection with VM and am not a VM employee.

VM employees do read and respond to topics. Those people have the words 'Forum Team' next to their forum name and the VM infinity logo.

If you can post a photo of what you are referring to on here, the VM forum team might be able to refer that on internally for further investigation.

I say might because, as you have discovered, VM's installation processes are a total shambles for some unlucky customers of which you are one.

I am simply suggesting an alternative approach you could try on here.

I hope you manage to resolve the issue.

On our wavelength

OK, here are some photos at @goslow's suggestion:

WhatsApp Image 2023-09-13 at 17.10.19.jpgWhatsApp Image 2023-09-13 at 17.10.22.jpgWhatsApp Image 2023-09-13 at 17.10.17.jpg

Hi there @k1s 👋 Welcome to our forum and thanks for your post 😊 

Sorry to see that there have been delays with your services being installed. I'll certainly check this further for you to see if this existing cable can indeed be used or not.

I'll send you a PM to confirm some details so this can be done.



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On our wavelength

Sadly the PM response was nothing but an email to "our complaints team who specialise with delayed installations."  The complaint has been live and ignored for days.  The WhatsApp people just say "call the pre-pull" team and give various numbers to generic contact centres who say I need to be transferred to the "pre-pull" / "pre-installations" / "installations" teams, who invariably put me on hold for hours and then cut me off after I query why the say variously:

  1. there's a a wayleave needed (not correct),
  2. they contacted the owner of the land over which a wayleave is needed (no they haven't),
  3. there's a "blockage" (even though the existing cable runs over ground and along a wall),  
  4. the work is scheduled today and will definitely be complete (no workmen outside the house or up the road o the junction box)

Leaving aside (for a moment) the abject customer service, what does it take to actually get somebody to join up the dots and actually make sure there isn't wasted time / unnecessary delay / unnecessary work?