A CANCER patient has been left without a vital telephone lifeline after council contractors sliced through the Virgin broadband cable to her home.
And Dorothy Hampton and her husband Brian have been told the soonest workers can come out to repair the damage is August 9 – nine weeks after the incident happened.
The cable, which carried the senior citizens’ broadband, TV and telephone service, was accidentally cut by contractors as they dug a trench ready to lay fresh tarmac on a footpath close to their Evesham Road home on June 8.
“We immediately contacted Virgin and they told us they could do the job on June 10 but by the time they arrived the workmen had already filled the new footpath in, and the men from Virgin couldn’t touch it,” said Dorothy, who at 74, has endured bladder cancer.
To confuse matters the couple found it difficult to find out who was actually responsible for the footpath – normally it would have been Worcester County Council but on this occasion it turned out to be a borough council matter.
Virgin duly applied to the authority for permission to dig up the path again to re-lay the cable.
“Virgin told us the job would be done on July 7 – a month after it had happened, which we thought at the time was a bit much – but then the manager himself came out and told us they still couldn’t do anything because they hadn’t had the correct paperwork back from the council,” said Dorothy.
“Now we’re being told it will be August 9 – that’s two months with no broadband, no TV and no telephone.”
In the meantime the couple have had to get to grips with a mobile phone and a small Freeview TV in their dining room.
“It’s absolutely ludicrous that in this day and age you have to wait for nine weeks to get this sorted,” added Dorothy.
A spokesperson for Redditch borough council said: “We are aware of the situation and have been liaising with the customers.”