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Ill Worcestershire woman slams Sky's 'parade of excuses' after 8-month wait for landline

Friday, March 27th 2015 by Ellen Branagh

A woman who suffers a serious medical condition is still without broadband and a landline – eight months since she moved into her new-build home.

Last month Cable.co.uk reported how Jill Vizor had been left without broadband and a phone line since she moved to the Orchards housing development in Evesham, Worcestershire, in July.

She had been advised to relocate due to her medical condition acute fibromyalgia, which leaves sufferers in constant pain, as well as causing fatigue, sleep disturbance and joint stiffness.

As she relies on the internet to do things like online shopping and ordering her medication, Ms Vizor subscribed with Sky when she moved to the Barratt Homes-built ground-floor flat.

But months later she is still without any service, despite Sky telling us last month that work that was holding up the installation had been completed.

After months of delays Ms Vizor has now cancelled her order and said she is now due to receive a refund – and a £5 gesture of goodwill for her eight-month saga.

She now plans to try another provider in the hope that she will finally get connected.

When we reported on her lengthy wait in February, Sky said it was reliant on BT Openreach in cases like this.

A spokesperson for Openreach said work to install a new broadband cabinet, including offsite and onsite cabling, had been delayed because some of the underground ducting offsite was blocked.

Another delay was caused by a gas leak, the spokesperson said, but told us that the duct work had been completing and cable work was due on 23 February.

Since then Ms Vizor has been told that Openreach had told Sky that “jointing work” – where cable is joined together – had been held up, and was later told she might get connected in April.

Poor signal

She was provided with a ‘dongle’ by Sky but the poor signal means it does not work, and to get a signal on her own mobile phone, she has to sit on a windowsill, which causes her pain.

To use broadband for things like her daughter’s homework or to order medication, or renew household accounts, she has to travel to the local library.

“There’s just a whole parade of excuses,” she said.

“I really can’t believe that developers are allowed to even sell houses without basic utiliies.”

After her continuing problems, Ms Vizor told us that she had cancelled her order with Sky and is switching to BT, who have told her she will be connected on 20 April.

Asked about Ms Vizor’s situation, Sky said they had kept Ms Vizor updated about progress BT Openreach was making whenever they had information. In late January, Openreach had confirmed that the likely connection date would be in April, which Sky advised Ms Vizor about.

Earlier this week she was advised that her connection could go ahead, with an appointment made for 13 April, but since then she decided to cancel, Sky said.

A Sky spokesperson said: “We share Ms Vizor’s frustration at the delay to her line installation and we apologise that we were not able to resolve the situation more quickly.

"Sky, like most other ISPs, is wholly reliant on BT Openreach in cases such as this and so unfortunately aren’t able to fix the issues ourselves.

"We have made clear to BT Openreach that customers should be able to expect a better standard of service.”

[UPDATE: Sky has told Cable.co.uk that Ms Vizor was offered £25 to refund her upfront payment.]

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