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Wednesday, 20 January 2016 12:24

BT finally to honour promise?

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Boring picture - perhaps.  But not for residents waiting for improved broadband Boring picture - perhaps. But not for residents waiting for improved broadband
One by one, High Barnet is being provided with the additional telephone cabinets that are needed to supply fast broadband connections to around 3,000 homes in and around the town centre.

British Telecom is advising customers likely to benefit from the newly installed fibre-enabled cabinets that they might still have to wait another four to five months for a faster service – and many aggrieved residents are still being given no indication when, or whether, they will be included in the upgrade.

Additional cabinets have now been installed in Wood Street, near the Black Horse public house; in Wood Street at the entrance to the Old Court House recreation ground; and at the top of Bells Hill.  

A notice posted online for those local BT customers involved advises them that work is under way, and that after waiting impatiently for several years, a superfast connection is at last in prospect:

“We’re connecting power to the new fibre cabinets and joining the new fibre lines to the existing copper network.  You can’t order a fibre service today, but typically it’ll be available to your premises within the next four – or five – months.”

The three additional cabinets installed so far are on a list of five that BT promised last September would be fibre-enabled.

The other two are in Manor Road, near the junction with Cedar Lawn Avenue, and Salisbury Road, near the junction with Stapylton Road.

But the Barnet Society says a higher broadband speed will not be provided to all of the 3,000 homes waiting for a superfast connection unless there are upgrades for three other cabinets, two in Bruce Road, near the junction with St Albans Road, and one in Salisbury Road near the junction with High Street.

Such is the frustration at BT’s failure to deliver faster internet speeds that the Fibre4Barnet campaign led by Ken Rowland has been investigating the possibility of raising £16,000 to fund the cost of delivering a superfast service to High Barnet by a wireless network.

Another alternative is to try to persuade Virgin Media to include High Barnet in a £3 billion programme for upgrading its broadband service.

Mrs Theresa Villiers, MP for Chipping Barnet, is due shortly to discuss the possibility with representatives of Virgin

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