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UK St Albans Residents in Hissy Fit over BT FTTC Broadband Cabinets

Posted: 06th Mar, 2010 By: MarkJ
fttc cabinetAttempts by BT engineers to install the operators latest 40Mbps Fibre-to-the-Cabinet ( FTTC ) broadband technology in St Albans, which is part of a £1.5 billion programme to rollout next generation broadband to 40% of the UK by summer 2012, have been thwarted after angry residents of The Ridgeway blocked them from constructing a necessary new cabinet.

Guiseppe Giubba, a local resident, told The Herts Advertiser:

"I told them I'm not having this. They are trying to obstruct me from getting in and out of my drive. And anyway I don't intend to look at that eyesore from my house. They can either move it somewhere else or I will."

Councillor Chris Hackett , another local resident, added:

"My neighbour and myself are very unhappy at the prospect of having to look at this massive ugly structure spoiling the view from our front rooms. There are plenty of other sites which would be more suitable."

The situation is almost identical to one that BT faced last year in Muswell Hill, North London, when residents of a conservation area forced similar work to be halted (here). The locals complained that BT's large new 1.8m tall junction boxes (cabinets) were "unsightly" and causing an obstruction.

However the issue in St Albans is less clear cut because BT is attempting to install its new cabinets OUTSIDE of a conservation area, which it is allowed to do. The council would have no authority to refuse permission for the BT boxes, despite angering more than one of its members.

It's understood that District Cllr Jack Pia is now trying to organise a meeting between the councillors, local residents and BT to discuss possible alternative solutions without sacrificing the very real benefits that a fibre optic based broadband connection can bring. But if they don't want the box then we'll have it instead :wink: . Credits to Thinkbroadband for spotting the news.
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