WAITING: Ipswich Trades Hall secretary and treasurer Brian Hall has had difficulty connecting the building to the National Broadband Network.
WAITING: Ipswich Trades Hall secretary and treasurer Brian Hall has had difficulty connecting the building to the National Broadband Network. Hayden Johnson

'Bloody shocking': Ipswich tenants' two-year NBN fail

TWO tenants scheduled to benefit from the fastest internet in Ipswich have described the frustration in waiting two years for a connection to be established.

Inside the upper rooms of the brick Ipswich Trades Hall building, grey desks, old campaign papers and a typewriter resemble a typical 1980s office scene.

In contrast to the furnishings, the building's internet is supposed to be straight from the future.

On the top floor, Trades Hall volunteer Brian Hall reflects on the two-year process and countless visits by National Broadband Network and Telstra technicians.

It was the first time internet was connected to the top floor of the Trades Hall.

"The NBN came along and we though why not, you've got to have it," Mr Hall recalled.

He said each time a technician attended there seemed to be another reason why the network could not be connected

"It just goes on and on," he said.

In two years several NBN boxes were installed, which Mr Hall claims are in the wrong spot.

He was also forced to pay about $900 for an electrician to install powerpoints on three separate occasions after confusion about where the boxes should have been located.

The building's lift was also left without an emergency phone for about 12 months.

"Lifts should not operate without an emergency phone, that's the law," Mr Hall said.

After calling NBN Co, Telstra and the lift maintenance contractor, Mr Hall came to the conclusion; "it's no one's problem but mine".

He described the process of connecting to the NBN as "absolutely bloody shocking."

In late-2017 the network was finally connected with Mr Hall happy with the service speed and quality.

On the ground level of Ipswich Trades Hall, the connection tale told by Gawdy Green Copy and Print owner Vonnie Sanson is similar.

For about two years NBN Co technicians struggled to locate her business and each time they attended Mrs Sanson was left without a connection.

"We say we're on the ground level and they ring up a few days later and ask; is that in a basement," she said.

After countless visits resulting in fruitless progress, Mrs Sanson was at her wits end.

 

Trades Hall secretary/treasurer Brian Hall and Gawdy Green Copy & Print owner Vonnie Sanson have had difficulty with the installation process.
Trades Hall secretary/treasurer Brian Hall and Gawdy Green Copy & Print owner Vonnie Sanson have had difficulty with the installation process. Hayden Johnson

"Every time I get a phone call or a visit I just think oh, not again," she said.

"I just want them to come and get us connected so we're not paying more money than we need to."

On January 6 Mrs Sanson received a letter stating her NBN would not be connected.

"It's all been cancelled so we don't know what's going to happen," she said.

"They sent us an email and rang and said the work order has been cancelled."

A spokeswoman for NBN Co said the order had been cancelled by Telstra.

Telstra Area general manager Darren Clark said a technical issue resulted in Mrs Sanson's order to be cancelled for a short period.

"Our systems picked this up immediately and we have been working with her to arrange her connection," he said.

"We do apologise for any inconvenience caused."

While Mrs Sanson admitted faster internet would not improve the productivity of her business she said the cost of the connection would benefit her.

"It will be way cheaper than what we've got at the moment, that's why we were looking forward to it," she said.

"For two years we've been paying extra money because they just can't seem to get it right.

"I'm not sure it would make much difference to the business but it would cost us less which is a big thing in small business."

When asked to describe her connection experience, Mrs Sanson said it was "totally frustrating".

"I don't know how else to describe it," she said.


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