RESIDENTS on a new South Tyneside estate are finally starting to hear a change of tone after being left without phone lines for months.
Families on the Beechbrooke development, in Simonside, South Shields, moved into their new homes three months ago, and have been clocking up expensive mobile phone bills ever since because their landlines didn’t work.
Among them were retired couple Billy and Margaret Horn, who moved into a bungalow in Collin Drive on April 20.
But yesterday, after a long wait, the couple finally had their phone connected.
The couple, who have seven grandchildren, had signed up to have their TV, phone and internet supplied by Sky, but when engineers from the company came to fit the devices, they explained that they couldn’t install the phone or internet because there was no connection.
Mrs Horn, 66, a former cook, said: “Sky came first thing in the morning to fit the phone line and we’re just over the moon.
“I think other people are still waiting though and our neighbours are unhappy that they haven’t got their phones yet, but we hope they get sorted soon.
“We’re just so happy to finally have ours.
“Ringing my family and the hospital to make appointments is going to be so much easier now, and it’s not going to cost us a fortune like it has been”
“It may seem like a small thing to some people, but for us, it was a huge thing to be without a landline, and we’re so happy to finally have one.
“It really is thanks to the Gazette, as well. Those previous stories really did the trick.
“I’m going to have a whole day on the phone calling everyone for a catch-up.”
Other residents are still without a landline.
A grandmother-of-three, who lives alone, said: “I have no phone yet. It is good news that some people are getting their phones sorted now, but we will just have to wait.”
The lady, who is waiting to be admitted to hospital for treatment to a brain aneurysm, added: “I haven’t heard anything from BT yet about when mine will be getting sorted.
“I am glad for the people who have had their phones done, and I’m pleased that hopefully it is getting sorted and soon.”
A spokesman for BT said: “We are sorry for the delay. This has proved a complex job involving extensive excavations, the installation of about 400 metres of underground cable and the laying of 150 metres of ducting.
“Most of the ducting has now been laid. We are working to complete the work as quickly as possible and expect to provide service next month.”