Two councilors say they were ‘inundated with complaints’ about a fiber optic broadband company carrying out work in Maidenhead.
Stuart Carroll and Gurpreet Bhangra (Con) of Boyn Hill say the projects undertaken by CityFibre in their neighborhood have left residents “deeply disappointed and worried”.
The telecommunications company has built a fiber optic network across Maidenhead, laying new cables and installing telegraph poles in a bid to improve connectivity.
But Tory councilors remained concerned about the nature of the work, saying CityFibre’s repair of sidewalks has been haphazard, particularly at Great Hill Crescent.
They added that a pole was erected outside a resident’s home in Boyn Hill Road without any warning or prior consultation, with a letter attached to the structure inviting comments after it was erected.
Cllr Bhangra told the announcer that residents feel their house value has dropped as a result and fear the pole will fall on their house in high winds.
The Boyn Hill Road telegraph pole (above)
Advisors wrote a letter to CityFibre’s general manager, Greg Mesch, requesting a meeting with the company to resolve the issues raised.
“Your re-editing work is very poor and unacceptable to us as advisers,” the letter reads. “In another part of Boyn Hill [Rutland Place]your workers cut around a car with extremely poor and frankly unsatisfactory workmanship.
“We have been inundated with complaints and are deeply unhappy with the situation. All work carried out in Boyn Hill and the Royal Borough must be carried out to appropriate standards.
Cllr Bhangra added this week that the works were an “absolute shambles” and he wanted answers as to why the quality was so poor.
“We welcome super-fast broadband but not at the expense of residents who have to see the poor quality of workmanship that has been left behind,” he said.
“They don’t clean up afterwards and the residents are unhappy. It’s really bad and we’ve had a lot of residents contacting us expressing their anger and frustration, asking why this was allowed. I would expect much better from a company like this, especially if they roll this out across the borough.
Cllr Bhangra said the telegraph pole was installed a few weeks ago at Boyn Hill Road.
“I’m sure they [CityFibre] would have obtained permission [for the pole] but it’s still a lack of being told that’s what’s happening,” he added. “The resident thinks it’s going to affect the value of his property.”
A spokeswoman for CityFibre said: ‘We are sorry to hear of the concerns raised at Boyn Hill Road regarding the installation of a power pole.
“Our team use a range of construction techniques to deploy our full fiber network and in most cases we place a small black connection box in the ground or on a nearby utility pole, but this may vary due to the unique environment of each street.
“It provides access to faster and more reliable connectivity than an underground deployment and minimizes disruption to residents by reducing the need for roadworks.
“We understand that the works may cause disruption, but we are still working to manage this with all stakeholders, ensuring that our construction is completed as quickly as possible.
“CityFibre is investing at least £14 million to deliver a comprehensive city-wide fiber network that will sustain the city’s digital infrastructure for decades to come and we thank the people of Maidenhead for their patience and support. support as we transform the city’s digital capabilities.”