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Two months of ‘broken promises’ and 29 phone calls just to get BT broadband working

Friday, June 19th 2015 by Phil Wilkinson-Jones

A BT customer had to make 29 phone calls to the provider over two months just to get his broadband up and running.

Kerry Smith, from Kempston, Bedfordshire, ordered fibre broadband online on 5 March but after waiting two weeks, called BT only to find out that his order had been lost.

This was the first of a series of phone calls that lasted a total of eight-and-a-half hours and cost Mr Smith almost £100 in call charges.

Having to use mobile data in the absence of a fixed broadband line cost him another £100, he told Cable.co.uk.

After finally getting his broadband installed on 14 May, Mr Smith is now asking BT to pay both bills as well as appropriate compensation after turning down the company's original “insulting” offer of £51.

He hit out at the telecoms company for "constant failings and broken promises" and for trying to "barter" with him over how much he should be refunded.

During the two months between placing his order and actually getting connected, Mr Smith was told more than once that he couldn’t have fibre broadband because his house is served by a copper line – despite there being a fibre-enabled street cabinet outside the property.

When he eventually managed to speak to BT’s fibre team, Mr Smith was told there was an issue on his line but he was speaking to the right team who would sort everything out.

But after hearing nothing, he called them a second time.

“I was told again that my order had been cancelled and there was no record of my previous call,” said Mr Smith.

'Truly disgusting'

“I told them they needed to get an engineer to come to my house to resolve the issue because it clearly was not getting resolved over the phone. This was costing us money.”

A few days later – after more phone calls – Mr Smith’s BT Home Hub finally arrived but a week, and two missed engineer visits, later it still wasn’t working.

By this time, he had made two formal complaints and his case had been escalated to an executive level.

“On 14 May [they] managed to get the broadband working, but avoided the questioning about compensation for costs I have incurred,” he said.

“I asked directly about the compensation listing all the costs we have incurred in the house due to the unnecessary delays.

“[They] made an offer of £31 credit to my account, which I found quite insulting. I refused this offer which lead to an increase to £51.

“This insulted me further – to think after all the stress that has been caused they are trying to barter about how much I should be refunded.”

Mr Smith described the whole experience as “honestly one of the most stressful things we have ever gone through”.

“The poor service was relentless. No one took ownership of my complaint, constant failings and broken promises.

“It is truly disgusting that such a large organisation like BT cannot even offer the refund deserved.

“I would expect a full refund, apology and extra compensation as a good will gesture,” he said, adding that BT is now offering better broadband deals than the one he signed up for.

Cable.co.uk asked BT for a comment, but had not received one at the time of publication.

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