MS3 allowed to restart East Yorkshire telegraph pole scheme after admitting mistakes

Residents protesting against telegraph poles in Hedon
Some residents have attempted to physically block the installation of poles in Hedon. Credit: ITV News

A broadband company has admitted failing to meet its own "high standards" after it was given permission to resume a controversial scheme to install telegraph poles in residential streets.

MS3 Networks has been embroiled in a row with residents of parts of East Yorkshire over the use of masts to install full fibre broadband. Objectors say they are an eyesore.

Contractors were told to suspend work by East Riding of Yorkshire Council (ERYC) on health and safety grounds after concerns were raised about poles being installed in darkness.

The company has now been given permission to restart work.

In a statement MS3 said it had carried out "a full investigation and completion of corrective actions".

It added: "The investigation confirmed that MS3 networks has been operating in adherence to relevant regulations and standards, work has been completed with necessary permissions and consent from National Highways and that operations are following the code of practice for street works.

"There have, however, been some occasions where MS3 has not met the highstandards set by itself and ERYC.

Police have been involved in marshalling protests. Credit: ITV News

"MS3 Networks takes its obligations seriously and will be completing all the corrective actions required to rectify the situation."

Police have been involved in keeping the peace in parts of Hedon and Hessle, near Hull, after a backlash against MS3's work.

There have been public protests and some residents have attempted to physically block the installation of poles close to their homes.

Campaigners want the company to use existing underground infrastructure managed by telecommunications company KCOM.

KCOM has provided telephone and broadband connections in Hull and the surrounding area almost exclusively for almost 120 years.

Under Ofcom rules, it must provide other operators access to its network.

But it says competitors have failed to follow the agreed application process or have not applied at all – a claim MS3 denies. MS3 says the prices KCOM demands for sharing its infrastructure are prohibitive.

MS3 chief executive Guy Miller said its street works were "an essential part of MS3’s mission to bring affordable, accessible broadband to residents and businesses".

East Riding Council confirmed it had given MS3 permission to resume work.

A spokesperson said: "The council has asked MS3 to meet best practices and industry standards, as well as improve communication and engagement with residents and the council and provide timely and accurate information about their work schedule, progress, and impact.  

"We have also asked the company to address any complaints or queries from the residents and the council promptly and professionally, and to resolve any disputes or damages amicably."

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