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Residents Moan After Virgin Media Engineers “burn” Some Hedge Leaves

Monday, May 22nd, 2017 (11:09 am) - Score 2,443

Residents of Copmanthorpe, a village that sits just outside of York, have managed to find one of the least justified reasons to complain about Virgin Media’s civil engineering teams, which occurred after the local work to deploy new ultrafast broadband and TV cables left some hedge leaves “burnt“.

Apparently a number of hedges in the village have been left with a streak of browned leaves (looks kind of like autumn), which was caused after contractors working for Virgin Media chose to point the hot exhaust for their machinery directly towards the once completely green hedges instead of away from them.

Granted having a streak of mildly browned leaves is annoying but it’s also something that nature should happily clear up of its own accord. We suspect that locals might have been even less pleased had said machinery been put on the road to block traffic. Another question mark is whether or not some of those hedges have overgrown too much of the public footpath and need pruning.

Over the years we’ve had to report on some fairly shoddy street works from different operators but on this occasion we’re struggling to see why there’s such a fuss about it in the The York Press (image by Frank Dwyer). Surely a few browned leaves is a small price to pay for gaining access to 350Mbps broadband and modern cable TV/phone services? It may even help to boost local house values.

A Virgin Media Spokesperson said:

“We apologise to the residents of Copmanthorpe for any inconvenience we may have caused. We are aware of some concerns raised by residents and are working hard to resolve these as soon as possible.”

Mind you other residents did have some complaints about the blocking of pavements, as well as barriers being left on laws and the quality of reinstatement work but unfortunately the original article doesn’t offer any detail on the latter. Some disruption is of course inevitable with major street works and that’s often the price you have to pay for keeping infrastructure up-to-date with the 21st Century.

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By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
Leave a Comment
18 Responses
  1. James says:

    idiots. get a life

  2. CarlT says:

    ‘Mr Gatman, a former councillor, Mayor of Selby and chairman of North Yorkshire Fire Authority.’

    Retirement can be boring.

  3. JustAnotherFileServer says:

    Where do I sign up for burnt hedges in return for 350Mbps internet connection? haha

    1. James says:

      No where, they get burnt hedges and 350mbps for 2 hours a day – before 3PM ofcourse.

      Anyway – they don’t do 350 yet – do they?

    2. StevenNT says:

      VM Business now offer 350Mbps, not but not on the residential side which is 300 at most.

    3. James says:


      They don’t offer any past 200 in my area, which is a shame they used to offer 300 but I guess it can’t cope

    4. James says:

      The business side I mean

    5. Rich says:

      300 headline, but it’s provisioned at 345 rate limit.

  4. TheFacts says:

    First world problem.

  5. George says:

    I wonder if the light (in the fibre) was travelling so fast and caused this

    Let us hope Fastershire in Gloucester sort their act out as well as VM here.

    1. James says:

      If not someone like Rural BB can give you GB for peanuts a month.

  6. Robert Smith says:

    You cant make an omlate without cracking eggs!!!. We went through cable installation in 1997. And the world did not end then.

  7. Jazzy says:

    It’s not just about the burnt hedges, it’s nesting season and birds used hedgerow as a safe place to nest. The contempt for nature just shows that you’d rather have a few dead birds and destroyed habitat for their nesting season for fast internet

    1. Ultraspeedy says:

      Ah your the person that feeds the birds, which is kind thing to do. But then it eventually attracts the flying rats called Pidgeons. Which nick all the food the poor little Sparrows were getting from your feeder. Allows the Pidgeons to get nice and fat, coooo all day before finally crapping over everyones hung out washing before dusk…… Thanks for you wildlife conservation.

  8. Mr Jay says:

    Never seen a nest in a common Laurel hedge! I’m being presumtuous, but by the very nature of the complaint, this guy probably puts slug pellets in abundance around his Chrysanthemums in his well appointed borders behind his “hedge”, so I doubt he likes wildlife anyway. What a door knob. Wonder if he uses the internet anyway? Perhaps more streaks will follow on his hedge (VM latency ha ha).

  9. Jazzy says:


    Most councils are forbidden to cut back public hedgerow from Spring to Late Autumn too

    1. Ultraspeedy says:

      According to that link most birds nest at a height of 2 metres of more. The damage is about waist level (so about 1 metre) ergo no damage to nesting birds as they are no where near the burnt leafs.

  10. Matt says:

    Wish I was a billionair… I’d pay virgin to remove the cables and infrastructure and leave em with whatever they had before…

    I’d then get the hedges transplanted with identical examples ones so everything was hunky dory… just be amusing to be as sad as them about this sort of thing.

    I’d let virgin put a node in middle of my front garden if it meant I got a FTTP connection… hell I’d wire the thing into my fuse box just for goodwill.

    Ooooooooh sharrrrrap!

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