I had planned on sitting down at my desk to write a lovely, heartwarming piece on my two sheepdogs and the unique relationship that develops between man and beast while working the sheep.

Unfortunately, I’ve spent all morning chatting to a lovely lady named Moupriya on BT Live Chat, trying to rectify our never ending broadband issues once and for all.

People the length and breadth of the country are suffering from never-ending issues with their broadband, and it seems companies feel they can treat those in rural areas like second class citizens. Thousands of people are living and working in the countryside and rely heavily on a functioning internet connection for their businesses. Iona and I are no different, however, the service we have received from BT since moving to the area in late October 2014 has been disgusting, and yet they continue to charge us over £60 a month, every month without fail, for a sub-par service.

I realise that living in rural areas, we can’t expect the latest high flying unlimited space age fibreoptic internet connections, but is it too much for us to expect to receive the service which we are paying for?

I’ve lost count of how many BT Hub routers we’ve been through in the last 2 years, so when BT attached just short of £130 to our latest bill for a router they replaced in July, that was the last straw.

I was determined to compile a list of every fault we’ve had on our account to take to BT in a bid to get our money back. I had asked a number of times on the phone while chasing faults only to be told that they couldn’t provide me with this information, but after a 45 minute online chat with the wonderful Moupriya, I came away with that list.

And it is disgusting.

I knew it often seemed that our internet was on the blink more than it was functioning properly, but it actually turned out that we’ve actually had 29 faults since the 26/11/2014, amounting to over 130 days of interrupted service. Thats over 4 months!

19 days here, 15 days there. A fortnight here, a fortnight there. I’m surprised we’re not on first name terms with half the bloody engineers!

There are even 3 complaints lodged on the account, which shows just how seriously they take those!

How is this acceptable?

We can’t be the only ones out there suffering this kind of service. We can’t be the only ones whose rural businesses are being negatively impacted.

I want to end this blog post with a dramatic ‘enough is enough’, but I’m not really sure where to go from here. Is an online petition going to help? Or how about raising the issue with the farming media? There must be a way for us, and everyone else who experiences issues in rural areas, to have our voices heard, because it’s unacceptable to be paying for a service that only works two-thirds of the time.

On another note, anyone know any reliable, value-for-money broadband providers?!

One thought on “Rural Broadband

  1. Borgue Community Council is campaigning on this issue and looking into a possible community solution. In the meantime, as of late last year, the government has issued a 2mb minimum broadband guarantee. This means everyone should have access to at least 2 MBPS broadband and if they don’t get it, they can apply for a grant to improve their signal, for example by installing a satellite receiver. You can find out more about the grants and access a speed checker here: http://basicbroadbandchecker.culture.gov.uk/

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