on 26-02-2018 15:49
Mobile phone reception here in relatively flat, rural south Suffolk is patchy. O2's coverage checker states that for my location, 2G is good indoors and 4G is OK out of doors. That may be the case but to have an intelligible call in the house, I need to be by a window - preferable upstairs. Out of doors, the signal disappears completely about 100 yards up the road. Other service-providers are no better. I switched from Orange (EE), mainly because of TuGo but now that has gone.
However, nearly a year ago, O2, possibly in conjunction with Vodafone, were granted planning permission for a new mast in the next village along, about a mile away as the proverbial crow flies though rooks are more common and do fly that route! This promised service improvement was well publicised in the local press and the MP got his picture taken. So far nothing appears to have happened and no ground has been broken on the site.
My rather unkind initial reaction was after all the hype and the expense of the planning application, we had been forgotten or put to the back of the queue again.
However, when I mentioned this to the Parish Council Chairman, he said he understood that the problem was with getting a suitable electricity supply. The regional electricity network operator (UKPN) had initially said a new substation was required but now there was a possibility of laying a cable to another substation with some spare capacity.
Yes, it must be hard to install a new mast:- find a suitable site with a landowner willing to sell or lease, overcome the local NIMBY objections despite wide agreement that the communities need & want the service, go through the intricate process of getting planning approval, arrange connections to the electricity supply network as well ensuring there are connections to O2's phone/data systems.
I hope it won't be another year.
on 26-02-2018 16:01
OnePlus 6 (O2 & Sfr), Z3 Tablet (Three UK), iPhone 8+ (EE)
on 26-02-2018 16:06
on 26-02-2018 16:47
I was not intending it to be seen as a rant - rather the opposite. Whilst I had found the delay frustrating, once I heard that it was down to difficulties in obtaining a power supply I was much more understanding and wanted to let others know that.
on 26-02-2018 16:52
I didn't read it as a rant to be honest. I saw it as a good source of information as to actually getting a mast commissioned. Some good investigation there @AndyinSuffolk and just goes to show that nothing is as straightforward as you would expect.
I too how you don't have to wait a further 12 months although I've been reading today some posts on here about a possible TU replacement.
on 27-02-2018 11:56
Interesting information @AndyinSuffolk! We have many members who come to the community and are not aware of what mast improvement work entails and why it can take some time. Thanks for sharing what you learned with the community.
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on 27-02-2018 12:27
I am pleased you have found it useful. A lot of information relating to the proposed mast can be found on the local planning authourity's website though navigating their search engine is not as simple as Google or Bing.
For instance, the mast is being installed on behalf of the operator (O2) by the "Wireless Infrastructure Group" who, apparently, "operate over 2,000 communication towers across the UK".
The tower will be 25 m high and placed on a concrete base 5.9 m by 5.9 m by 1.2 m thick. That is a lot of concrete! In addition the lattice tower steel-work has to be coated in a low reflective paint so it does not shine in the sun.
More recently there has been approval of an application to site the antennae higher up the mast. This was approved by the planning authority but the applicant had to pay a fee of £195!
on 27-02-2018 12:30
I read it as an excellent explanation of why people arent getting a reasonable service from their network supplier. However, as much as we want people to drag themselves into the 21st century and realise that good mobile coverage should be the rule and not the exception, it doesn't appear we are anywhere near that yet.
Thanks for posting @AndyinSuffolk