Going Underground – NO to MS3 poles” is the name of the campaign to oppose plans by MS3 Networks to install utility poles in Hedon and Preston.
PUBLIC MEETING 5th October 2023 – Update from the meeting: Essential anti-MS3 poles information.
You can join the campaign Facebook Group at: Hedon Says No To MS3 Telegraph Poles (or Any Other Company’s Poles!)
The campaign has stepped up a gear. The ten-year boycott of MS3 is now being extended by the organisers to the internet service providers (ISPs) that intend to use the poles.
Boycott MS3 and their ISPs
MS3 say that they have more than 20 partners selling their services on its network. These will be contacted and warned about the ramifications of using the unpopular telegraph-style poles in the area. Should the utility poles be installed, the ISP providers subject to the boycott will see their company details included on a blacklist of companies. The aim will be to put economic pressure on these ISPs and encourage supporters to switch to alternatives. The advice to local people will be to never deal with the blacklisted companies.
Using information available from public sources, the structure of the companies concerned, their finances, practices, policies, and any historical incidents, especially any misdemeanours discovered, will be scrutinised and published. The boycott will last for ten years before a review in October 2033. During this period of boycott, ISPs will be denied the normal goodwill and friendly relations afforded to other businesses looking to do business in the town and nearby villages.
Boycott of Companies in partnership with MS3 Networks:
This is to inform you, as a designated partner of MS3 Networks, Owen House Owen Avenue, Priory Park, Hessle, East Yorkshire, HU13 9PD, that your company has been placed on a list of such partners that are subject to a community boycott organised in Hedon and Preston.
Households in the aforementioned town and village have pledged not to use services delivered via MS3 Networks utility poles or the services of providers that choose to use MS3 poles.
This boycott shall remain active for a minimum of ten years and will not be reviewed until October 2033. During the period of boycott residents and businesses will be actively encouraged not to sign up to those providers that choose utility poles to deliver services.
This boycott will end upon receipt of a written commitment from the Chief Executive Officer of MS3 Networks that utility poles will not be deployed. In the case of pole deployment, only their removal shall see the end of this active boycott.
The list of boycotted companies will be maintained, published and kept in the public domain.
Name and address of the boycotted company to be added to the blacklist.
Office 3, 1e Uppingham Gate,
Orchard House, Hessle Square,
Home Telecom Customer Services,
Global 4 Communications Ltd, Global House,
60b Queen Street, Horsham,
West Sussex RH13 5AD.
Communications House, Lintonville Terrace
Marina Court, Hull, HU1 1TJ
Direct Save Telecom, Direct Save House,
Century Court, Tolpits Lane, Watford WD18 9RS
Link Broadband, Office 342, Admirals park, Victory Way,
Dartford DA2 6DQ
Octaplus Networks Ltd.,
27 – 29 Hessle Road, Hull, HU3 2AA
Hull Fibre, Salisbury House, Saxon Way, Hessle, HU13 9PB.
FiberZone, Telecom House, 277 Anlaby Road, Hull, HU3 2SE
MTH Networks, Kitteon House, Kettering Parkway, Kettering, NN15 6XW
**Specified as Business Providers**
Intrasource Limited, Redcliff Court, Redcliff Road, Hessle, HU13 0EY
Empire House, 22 Strickland Street,
Kingston Upon Hull, East Yorkshire,
Clear Business, No. 1 Dovecote House, Old Hall Rd, Sale, M33 2GS
Genius Technology Solutions, Commerce House, Carlton Boulevard, Lincoln LN2 4WJ
Primary Technologies Ltd.,
Suite 1204, K2 Tower,
60 Bond Street,
MS3 Networks CEO Guy Miller stated, “We have to consider everyone there (in Hedon), not just the ones protesting, to understand whether or not these services are wanted or needed.” The protesters challenge them on that point and urge the company to use an independent survey company to carry out consultation in the town that proves a need, or not, for utility-pole-driven broadband.
The campaign carries on in other ways too:
Inappropriately placed poles: There are particular circumstances where the installation of poles can be challenged. This includes those due to be located on narrow paths where they would impede prams and wheelchairs; those on private roads where you can refuse access, and those in conservation areas. You should contact your East Riding of Yorkshire Councillors immediately if you think this is an issue in your street.
Legal: A petition has been lodged with the East Riding of Yorkshire Council (ERYC) from protestors in Hessle that questions the legitimacy of the 28-day notices posted by MS3 and the legitimacy of their whole work programme to introduce new infrastructure. We’ll report back on how the ERYC respond to this.
Response from East Riding of Yorkshire Council
Apologies we have not been able to respond to your complaint sooner, this matter is something which the Council has received a large amount of correspondence on and we remain in discussion with those agencies involved. You will shortly receive an automated response informing you that ‘the Council is unable to process your communication’ and we wanted to contact you directly to explain why this is the case.
The Council appreciates residents’ concerns, however in this case the majority of the issues raised remain outside of the Council’s control as these telegraph pole installations fall under ‘permitted development’ where planning permission is therefore not required, as such the Council cannot outright refuse these installations. Separate to the planning considerations, the Council’s street work permit scheme grants utility companies the right to be able to undertake necessary work and focuses on traffic control measures and safety, it does not relate to the approval or installation of these telegraph poles.
The Council encourages early community engagement by the installing company, this allows residents to voice their concerns directly to the relevant telecommunications companies and seek independent legal advice if needed. Complaints about telegraph pole locations need to be directed to the telecommunications company concerned.
I appreciate this is not the answer you would have been hoping for, however as things stand the issues you have raised are not the something the Council can assist further with. We are though in the process of publishing more detailed information on this specific issue and further information will be made available at https://www.eastriding.gov.uk/planning-permission-and-building-control/
Information Governance and Feedback Team
Graham Stuart MP: MP for Beverley and Holderness, Graham Stuart, chaired an online meeting with MS3, East Riding Council and Councillor Steve Gallant on 24 September 2023. His response follows;
Graham Stuart, Member of Parliament for Beverley and Holderness, has chaired a meeting between MS3, the company installing telegraph poles in Hedon and Preston, Cllr Steve Gallant (SW Holderness, Lab) and East Riding of Yorkshire Council to try to find a solution that would work for residents.
In a meeting which saw a forthright exchange of views, Graham was able to get some clarity about the situation with the potential installation of telegraph poles in Hedon, which has seen significant numbers of objections lodged with the Council.
Cllr Gallant forcefully put forward the views of residents, including about conservation areas, alleged breaches of the Ofcom Code of Conduct and MS3 not making use of KCOM’s existing infrastructure.
Guy Miller, CEO of MS3, responded that fibre cables are permitted to be run from telegraph poles and that conservation areas will not see telegraph poles installed.
Furthermore, he raised concerning news that allegedly KCOM has put significant barriers to MS3 sharing KCOM’s infrastructure. Graham will be raising this with KCOM.
This issue is caused due to the unique nature of telecommunications around Hull, with an effective monopoly held by KCOM, rather than OpenReach. This means that companies like MS3, which seek to provide high-quality, low-cost broadband to third party providers, either use KCOM’s infrastructure or provide their own to open the broadband market to new players.
Mr Miller also highlighted that MS3 has significantly improved their FAQs and complaints procedures, following meetings with Cllr Gallant and others.
Beverley and Holderness MP Graham Stuart said: “I don’t want to see our streets unnecessarily cluttered with telegraph poles, and I want to see everyone have access to fast, affordable broadband.
“That’s why I met with MS3 and local representatives to get to the bottom of why these poles are going up in Hedon and Preston.
“I’m working with MS3 and KCOM to discover why poles were the chosen solution, and why KCOM and MS3 aren’t working together to improve broadband for everyone.”
Commenting, MS3 CEO Guy Miller said: “MS3 welcomes the input of Graham Stuart MP in helping us strike the correct balance between resident disruption and the need for competitively priced fibre broadband in his constituency.”
Cllr John Dennis said: “This ‘Telegraph Poles’ issue has been high on my agenda in recent days. It’s fairly obvious from the many calls and emails I have received that the proposal is very unpopular.
“South West Holderness residents quite rightly don’t want this invasion of their space to happen at all and prefer to see existing underground facilities being utilised wherever possible.
“In particular this is the case in our Conservation Areas which we want to protect to our utmost ability. Hopefully the town of Hedon and the village of Preston will not be seeing them erected in our central areas at all.
“We shall keep our eyes open and intervene if we think that rules and regulations are being breached or that MS3 promises are not being kept.
“Please let your Conservative Ward Members know if unwanted poles are appearing in the wrong locations. In some locations, eg if underground facilities are not available, they might have to be erected but we would want to keep the numbers to an acceptable level.”
The Petition, Boycott pledges, Posters and Obstruction: The petition aims to reach 10,000 signatures and beyond and people are encouraged to sign and share, and then continue to share https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/647970
|PETITION||30 Nov 9:30 pm||1 Dec 9pm||+|
|Beverley & Holderness||815||819||4|
|Haltemprice & Howden||484||486||2|
|Hull West & Hessle||136||136||–|
|Oldham West & Royton||116||116||–|
|From other places||1||2|
Boycott Pledges can be downloaded and should be returned as indicated.
If you can’t download, sign and return the Boycott Pledge, an alternative is to use the online version on Google Forms: BOYCOTT.
Posters can be downloaded or picked up from Hedon Town Hall (open Wed, Thurs and Fri from 9am to 3pm). They can be displayed in windows.
With pole deployment expected to start at the end of the month, and with MS3 unwilling to conduct further consultation, the protest organisers have heard that some individuals have decided to actively obstruct poles being installed outside their homes. The organisers of the protest do not wish to lead people into areas of potential illegality but understand the frustration and anger that pole deployment will cause. People with plans to obstruct poles should contact the campaign “Going Underground – NO to MS3 poles”. There are ways that such actions might be supported with shows of people-power that will severely disrupt and delay the deployment of poles.
Help Fund the Campaign!
Support the campaign on Just Giving: https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/Going-Underground