When The Plan Doesn't Go To Plan

Then comes reality, when you prepare for an actual date, plan it all out but once you leave the house anything can happen.  The plan doesn’t go to plan.

When a plan is made to go into areas that haven’t seen any deployment for 20, maybe 30 years, what we expect to find in the ground according to the plans is sometimes not what we do find.

Surprises frequently happen, for example – engineers discover farmers have accidentally damaged cables, protected animals can be found nesting where we were due to dig, roads need to be closed, floods happen, tree trunks damage cables, building works have buried infrastructure, private land owners need to be consulted and give wayleave permissions.

These are just a few examples of events that often cause delays.

Then the whole plan and associated timescales shift because delays in one area can have a knock-on effect in the other areas in the same phase and subsequent phases.

At Field Survey stage, we might discover reasons that we can’t upgrade a cabinet. For example, there may not be a suitable power supply within the immediate vicinity that can be used to power the cabinet; it can cost many thousands of pounds to lay new ducting and cabling to install power over a distance greater than 100 metres.

Depending on the number of homes, the cabinet serves, this cost may not make it viable to upgrade the cabinet.

We could also plan to upgrade the cabinet in a particular phase, but face issues with being able to undertake the work as planned. For example, the decision could be taken that the most suitable and cost effective location for the fibre cabinet is to site it on privately owned land. This means that we need to seek permission from the land owner which can take time to resolve. In this particular scenario, rather than not upgrade at all, we may need to push the installation back a few months to allow us time to gain the necessary permissions.

So while we will always do our very best to upgrade all of the cabinets and other infrastructure as initially planned, unfortunately there may be circumstances beyond our control that will prevent us from being able to do so. 

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