I appreciate you getting back to me on your PM's with the information I needed to look into the situation to see what has happened here.
Looking at this the engineer has had to go out to rectify a fault with the line with your old number.
When they have attended the network switch connected to the number and the line was faulty. The only way to get an active line working for you was to connect you to a new switch and this is not compatible with the number range your old number was connected to.
Because of this they have had to give you a different telephone number.
This may be as a result of cabinet upgrade works to the area in recent years and you have been on an old switch at the cabinet until now.
Unless we have additional switch capacity for the old network ID in the cabinet you are connected to there is no way we will be able to reconnect the old number.
I am going to check into this tomorrow with our Telephony Operations Center to see if there is anything else they can suggest or do that may help here.
Karen, Thank you! For the first time I've got a straight answer. I'm not happy about it and have some questions about the explanation but I'm very pleased that you've responded speedily. I'm still awaiting a response to my complaint. How should I go forward regarding these questions and how to address the customer service issues and the inconvenience of suddenly changing our number (the biggest problem is that the old number still rings)? Thanks again for the reply
I've just spoken to Telephony Operations and they have checked the cabinet for me and confirmed there are no old switches there to get that number connected back up again for you and they have reconfirmed what I have advised last night as being correct. I am incredibly sorry for the inconvenience this has caused to you.
They have checked the old number too and it no longer now rings.
I'd like to look into the complaint for you that's been raised to see if we can support so I'm going to pop a PM back to you so we can pick this up.
VM have now confirmed that they will not give us our old phone number back and have offered us a massive £38 credit for the loss of phone service, all of the time and calls that I have had to make and the upcoming time and costs I will have to spend changing my number with everyone. Never mind that I am missing potentially important calls.