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Broadband: worse before it gets better?

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Llansawel: Optical fibre cable being laid on Sunday (Oct 30)

Llansawel: Optical fibre cable being laid on Sunday (Oct 30)

OPENREACH engineers working in the vicinity should be good news, but in the North Carmarthenshire village of Llansawel, a number of residents have complained about broadband loss every few minutes.

We contacted Openreach, a subsidiary of BT, to ask why this loss of service is happening. None of the ‘help’ solutions on their website appeared at all relevant, until ‘further help’ was offered. I clicked on the link. An error message came up: “404 error. We’re sorry but we can’t find the page you are looking for. This may be because the page has moved, page address has changed, link may be broken.”

Further searching revealed a contact form – which says that Openreach only deals with mess left in the street or failure to restore the environment after works, positioning of new equipment, or dangerous driving by engineers. There was nothing about engineering works damaging the service.

For that, individual broadband users have to contact their service providers who, because the problem most likely originates with engineering works, struggle to find a solution.

In Llansawel, Openreach is digging up the road (which was resurfaced two years ago) to lay fibre optic cable as part of the Welsh Government’s Superfast Cymru scheme to bring fast broadband to areas which would not receive it without subsidy. By October 19, more than 590,000 premises had access to superfast broadband under the £425 million scheme, which is funded by the Welsh Government, the UK Government, and the European Union’s European Regional Development Fund, together providing about £225 million in total, and by BT which is funding the rest.

The current roll-out, the second contract, is expected to finish in October 2017 when 17,500 kilometres of optical fibre cable and 3,000 green roadside cabinets should have been installed.

The ambition is excellent, but the process is detached from the public, who do not know when Openreach engineers will be in their road, for how long they will be there, and who have no one to contact if their existing broadband service suffers during the works.

It’s quite a paradox for a communications company.

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Business

Llandeilo gas works to begin say Wales & West Utilities

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WALES & West Utilities will shortly begin work to upgrade gas pipes in Llandeilo.

Wales & West Utilities has liaised with Carmarthenshire County Council to plan the work and it has been agreed that work will commence after the town has celebrated the Festival of Senses.

The £123,000 investment scheme, which is essential to keep the gas flowing safely to heat and power local homes and businesses, will begin in New Road on 21 November. This section of work will be complete before Christmas and Wales & West Utilities will return to the town next year to undertake further work in the Crescent Road area. Barring any engineering difficulties, work in the town will be complete by the end of February next year.

Wales & West Utilities Adam Smith is managing this gas pipe upgrade work. He said: “Working with the Council, we have planned this work to accommodate the needs of the town.

“While most of the gas network is underground and out of sight, it plays a central role in the daily lives of people across Llandeilo. Whether it’s heating your home, making the family dinner or having a hot bath, we understand how important it is for your gas supply to be safe and reliable and there when you need it.

“We know that working in areas like this is not ideal, but it really is essential to make sure we keep the gas flowing to homes and businesses in the area, and to make sure the gas network is fit for the future. We’ll have a team of gas engineers on site throughout the project to make sure our work is completed as safely and as quickly as possible while keeping disruption to a minimum.

“This work is essential to keep the gas flowing to local homes and businesses today, and to make sure the gas network is ready to transport hydrogen and biomethane, so we can all play our part in a green future.”

Our Customer Service Team is ready to take your call if you have any questions about our work. You can contact them on freephone 0800 912 2999.

Alternatively, you can contact us on Twitter @WWUtilities or Facebook.com/WWUtilities.

Wales & West Utilities, the gas emergency and pipeline service, brings energy to 7.5m people across the south west of England and Wales. If you smell gas, or suspect the presence of carbon monoxide, call us on 0800 111 999 straight away, and our engineers will be there to help any time of day or night. Before visiting, we’ll ask you to let us know if you or anyone in your household, is experiencing Coronavirus symptoms or self-isolating. We’ll still come and help you: but our teams will take some additional precautions to keep us all safe.

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Police appeal following theft of items from Home Bargains Crosshands

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OFFICERS from Dyfed Powys Police have confirmed that they are investigating the theft of items, including a Christmas Nutcracker Ornament valued at £129.99, from the Home Bargains store in Crosshands, Carmarthenshire.

The theft occurred at about 12:40pm on Tuesday, 27th September 2022.

Officers have carried out all possible lines of enquiry, and are now appealing for help from the public.

They would like to identify the people in the CCTV image, who may have information that could help the investigation.

Anyone who knows who the people are, or if you believe you are pictured, contact Dyfed-Powys Police.

This can also be done either online at: https://bit.ly/DPPContactOnline, by emailing 101@dyfed-powys.police.uk or phoning 101.

If you are deaf, hard of hearing, or speech impaired text the non-emergency number on 07811 311 908.

Please quote reference DPP/2006/27/09/2022/02/C

Alternatively, contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously by calling 0800 555111, or visiting crimestoppers-uk.org.

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Witness appeal after car is stolen and burnt out

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DYFED-POWYS POLICE is investigating the theft of a car from a property in Lando Road, Burry Port, which was later found burnt out in Pembrey Country Park.

Officers are appealing for witnesses to the theft of the blue Ssangyong Rexton, which took place sometime between 5pm on Friday, 11th November, and 9am on Saturday, 12th November, and would like to speak to anyone who may have information or CCTV or dashcam footage.

Anyone with information that could help officers with their investigation is asked to report it to Dyfed-Powys Police, either online at: https://bit.ly/DPPContactOnline, by emailing 101@dyfed-powys.police.uk, or by calling 101. If you are deaf, hard of hearing, or speech impaired text the non-emergency number on 07811 311 908.

Quote reference: DP-20221112-109

Alternatively, contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously by calling 0800 555111, or visiting crimestoppers-uk.org.

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