BT’s ongoing delays in rolling out SuperFast Broadband to rural areas in the Keady area have been criticised.
The telecoms giant claim that major works are needed to bring cabling through Keady to enable the next stage of the roll out to reach vast swaths of Derrynoose, Carnagh, Drumhillery and Madden which have yet to benefit from the roll out of improved broadband services.
Councillor Thomas O’Hanlon, who held discussions with the utility company this week explained: “Broadband is not a lifestyle choice, it’s a necessity and local residents are sick, sore and tired of being fobbed of by broadband providers who are continuously promising them works will be complete soon and yet nothing happens.
“Decent internet access is not just a social need, people need it to shop, do business, banking, farmers need it to complete necessary paperwork and increasingly students need it to study. We need to see real improvement in broadband services, and we need to see it urgently.
“BT are responsible for rolling out the broadband infrastructure across Northern Ireland and they are being funded by Government to do so. In many areas this investment has been very successful and people now have access to High-speed / SuperFast Broadband however unfortunately this is not the case for many living across this area.
He added: “Broadband or indeed the lack of it is a major issue for rural dwellers in particular, and I am constantly raising the issue with BT and its representatives seeking updates. Over two years ago we were provided with a list of postcodes which were to be included in the scheme and we have seen a large number of new ‘Green Cabinets’ appear up and down rural roads. However despite cabinets appearing in areas, there is still no broadband.”
“For example, dwellers in the Derrynoose, Madden and Drumhillery areas have been experiencing great difficulty in accessing broadband. On investigating what is causing the delays I have discovered that some key ‘Green Cabinets’ despite being installed almost twelve months ago are still not active.
“It appears that BT need to bring cables from the Telephone Exchange in Keady out the Castleblaney Road to Derrynoose, down the main Derrynoose Road to a cabinet at the Crossnenagh / Fergort Road junction and to another at the Drumnahavil / Derrynoose Road. This is what is causing the delays and whist BT say these cabinets due to go live before the end of the year I am weary of their assurances.’
“I will continue to engage with BT in the coming weeks as we try to ensure that SuperFast Broadband is actually delivered and not just more green cabinets. However in the interim, I am compiling an updated list of locations that are still experiencing problems to pass to BT and would encourage people to get in touch.”
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