A large hotel in one of the district’s iconic beauty spots is struggling to keep up with 21st Century technology, it claims because of a lack of communication from a major internet company.
Stoke by Nayland Hotel Golf and Spa is situated in the Dedham Vale Area of Natural Beauty, and is popular with businessmen and women using the hotel’s conference facilities.
The hotel needs fast internet, with video-conferencing, guests and the hotel’s own computer servers reliant on the service.
“Everyone expects to see fast broadband everywhere now,” said Staurt Massey, head of group IT at the hotel. “Everything uses the internet.”
But a breakdown in communication between BT and Openreach, which owns most of the pipes and cables that connect customers to the telephone and broadband network, has meant the award-winning hotel is still having to pay large sums of money for wireless internet.
The pipes have been laid and the fibre optic cables were ‘blown’ down the pipes in June 2015, but the new internet system is not live.
The problems came to light when James Finch, Suffolk county councillor for the Stour Valley, stepped in to get information from BT.
Openreach engineers even came to the hotel on Tuesday, March 8, not realising the trench, pipies and cables had already been put in.
“There was nothing on the system to say it was there,” said Mr Massey. “There’s been very little communication from BT, it’s been a massive nightmare.
“There has been a bit more information in the last couple of weeks.
“But we get letters saying someone will be on site on a certain date but they don’t turn up. Nobody lets us know. We’ve had 15 or 16 of them, it’s just ridiculous.”
BT’s CEO of complaints is now trying to see what is going on.
Once it is finally complete the hotel is hoping for a super 330Mbps broadband speed. This is compared to the 100Mbps they currently get from their £1,000-a-month wireless internet. In the meantime Mr Passey said it was not just costing the company money because of the added expense, but because of potentially lost custom in a highly competitive market.