Three month delay for phone line limits business

Linda Weddell from East Cawledge Farm.
Linda Weddell from East Cawledge Farm.

The launch of a new bed and breakfast in a north Northumberland town has been scuppered by delays in activating the phone line.

Linda Weddell and her husband David moved to East Cawledge in Alnwick on July 11 to set up a B&B, but despite contacting two different phone and internet companies, they are still stranded without a phone line and therefore broadband.

Two weeks before the move, Linda contacted her phone company to try to arrange for the phone line to be activated, but nearly two months later, and having switched to a different company, the couple are still without phone and internet.

And they are not due to be connected until the end of this month, following a number of cancelled appointments.

“We are between the devil and the deep blue sea, because I don’t know what to do to speed things up,” Linda said.

“You can only rely on friends and family for so long.”

The original plan for the couple, who moved to Alnwick from Acklington, was to get started with their new business as soon as possible, but setting up a new B&B relies on the internet.

“For marketing purposes, we are stuck at the moment,” said Linda, adding that for a rural business, broadband and internet access is ‘everything’.

Their problems illustrate the need across north Northumberland for effective internet access, which is why the Gazette launched its campaign to get behind the county’s bid for superfast broadband last month.