Residents say 'no' to more high-speed broadband

​Plans to install unwanted telegraph poles to bring high-speed broadband to a leafy Louth street have been met with opposition by its residents.
The residents of St Mary's Park.The residents of St Mary's Park.
The residents of St Mary's Park.

People living on St Mary’s Park in the town were concerned when they received a leaflet through their doors on Thursday, March 9, from Spring Fibre to say that work would commence the following week to carry out excavation with a view to install 10metre-high poles to provide high speed, fibre optic broadband in the area.

But the residents are saying that not only is there not the need for this broadband, but they would not be happy with these poles being installed right outside their homes and “there appears to be no justificiation”, as well as criticising the company’s lack of consultation with residents.

A petition to stop the works from happening has now been circulated on the street, and so far the petition has attained the signatures of more than 40 people – around 90 percent of the residents.

A statement from the residents on the street has said: “The residents of St Mary’s Park have come together to question the ability of [Spring Fibre] to erect several 10 metre poles on their estate to provide internet connections.

"The company posted details of the development four days before their starting date, leaving the residents with a limited time to raise objections.

"Residents have now been in touch with their MP and their local council officials in the hope that the work can be cancelled.”

​A Lincolnshire County Council spokesman said that legislation in place for this sort of install rests almost entirely with the supplier, and that Highways can only get involved if the installation causes a safety issue.

At the time of going to press, the works to install the poles had not yet commenced.

“There are many protected trees on this street in so far as as every tree has a tree protection order on it,” a resident added.

The Louth Leader approached Spring Fibre for comment, but they have not responded at this time.

In a response to an email to the company by one of the residents, seen by the Louth Leader, a spokesman for Spring Fibre said:

"Spring Fibre work step by step with Lincolnshire County Council, when planning and installing fibre broadband. We work very hard to make sure the work we carry out is done with minimum disruption and offers the best service to the community.

"We also ensure that the teams installing any equipment do so without intrusion or damage to anyone’s’ property and that they are courteous and helpful at all times.”

Spring Fibre also confirmed that the team installing the poles would keep noise to a minimum, and that access for pedestrians and cyclists will be maintained:

“When planning our coverage, we review disruption to residents both in terms of installing the infrastructure and connecting up to the properties. In this instance, running the fibre cables overground via a telegraph pole offered the least invasive solution for providing ‘Fibre to the property’ (FTTP) services.

“And while we don’t always intend to work in the same areas as other providers, when planning our coverage, we do sometimes overlap. This is unfortunate, but not something we can always avoid.

“We started distributing letters in your area on March 8 and we carried out all the appropriate planning and notifications processes 28 days before any work started.

“As a business, our goal is to make sure that people across the UK have access to ultra-fast fibre broadband.

"We are working closely with local councils and residents to make sure we install this with as little disruption to the local community as possible.”

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