A FARMER was horrified to discover workers digging his driveway to install new internet cables without his permission.
Chris Partington claims contractors for broadband provider Gigaclear caused £10,000 in damage by destroying the tarmac and smashing his running water pipe.
The 69-year-old said builders got up while he was away and started drilling into the path to his home in Leominster, Herefordshire.
When he returns, he says he was told they were installing fiber optic cables and that the “disruption” to his property was essential.
But the willow farmer claims he was not consulted and never gave permission for them to be on his land.
And he was furious at the ‘extraordinary’ mess and destruction the workers left behind once they were completed – which he says will cost £10,000 to fix.
Chris, who also makes a living selling books on eBay, said: “Gigaclear completely destroyed the tarmac, broke a major drain pipe and left the driveway all lumpy and almost inaccessible.
“They even dug up my running water tap and left it abandoned.
“It’s £10,000 damage. It’s extraordinary.
“They were installing an internet fiber optic cable but I wasn’t consulted, nor are they paying permission to be on my property. No one asked my permission.”
Chris said the men first surrendered in February 2019 and he immediately complained to council.
But three years later, nothing has been done – and the problems are only getting worse.
He alleges that due to damage to the water system, his road gets flooded every time it rains, leaving it “a mess”.
“The entrance path is not flat and the water is coming out of the ground where the broken pipe is,” he said.
“Water is now overflowing on the road. This problem has been going on for years.
“It’s like a damn river when it rains, the road is a mess.
“It’s also very hilly with rocks regularly moving across the road that I regularly have to remove.”
It’s like a bloody river when it rains, the road is a mess.
Chris added: “I knew fiber optic cable was coming to the area but I thought they were digging up the road and putting it there.
“I didn’t realize they were taking the cheapest option of putting it on the edge.
“They’ve crossed the aisles of quite a few people in the area, but mine is the worst.”
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A Gigaclear spokesperson said: “We understand that Mr Partington has shared concerns about his property with the local council, but we have no record of receiving a complaint ourselves in 2019 or at any other time. moment.
“We take these concerns seriously, however, initial enquiries, including a site visit, suggest that we have not undertaken any excavation through Mr Partington’s driveway entrance.
“Nevertheless, we will continue to look into the matter.
“Gigaclear has been working hard to bring ultra-fast full fiber broadband to homes and businesses in Leominster, so the community can enjoy fast and reliable broadband speeds.
“The delivery and installation of this infrastructure is a huge undertaking, and we are working closely with local authorities to ensure that the appropriate refurbishment is carried out once the fiber optic cable is laid.”
A spokesperson for the Fastershire Broadband Project, a partnership between Herefordshire Council and Gloucestershire County Council to bring faster internet to homes and businesses, said: “Fastershire takes complaints about property damage very seriously.
“We found no correspondence between Mr Partington and Fastershire regarding the installation of fiber optic cables by Gigagclear.
“We invite Mr. Partington to contact us with any additional information that assists us in reviewing this matter.”