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Openreach Flying Cables Across Private Property

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Has Openreach flown a cable across your property and not provided you with any information on objecting to the cable?  Some parts of Openreach seem not aware of the latest legislation regarding their rights and OBLIGATIONS when flying cables over private property.  It has taken me months to get a cable moved and this is some information which may help in getting a cable you object to moved. 

First, based on my experience, don’t waste time with their complaints procedure which is tedious, difficult and obstructive and you’ll be responded to with a barrage of technical and legal bullshit telling you why they have flown the cable legally and why it can’t be movedSend a signed for letter to the CEO and if you get nowhere, raise it with your MP. 

The applicable legislation as at the end of 2023 is Schedule 1 of the Digital Economy Act 2017This supercedes parts of the Communications Act 2003When flying an overhead cable Openreach has to comply with paragraph 75 which is a duty to attach a noticeThis should provide an address to which you can send you objection to the cableOpenreach are committing an offence if this notice is not providedOpenreach apparently haven’t instructed their engineers to leave these noticesIf they don’t leave a notice, write to Openreach and ask for the details that should have been on this noteThe right to object is described in Part 12 which is paragraphs 78 to 81.  

If the cable is impacting your enjoyment of your land and it would be possible for the cable to re-routed without the re-routing resulting in another landowner being impacted and without Openreach incurring substantial additional cost, the county court can instruct Openreach to move it and there is provision within the legislation for the county court to award you costs. 

So, before allowing Openreach to bully you, make sure you have read the legislation and be prepared to take them to court. 

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We tried to get Openreach to install fibre at my parents' house.


We had installed ducting to the pavement, but they said this just had copper lines in it. They wanted to take the fibre from a pole behind the house across next door's garden and attach it to the outside of my parents' house. It would have been pretty low over their garden by the time it hit the house.


We just said no thanks we will stick with Virgin.

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Helpful post , thanks.  Before I built my house we had to remove an SSEN pole that also carried a telephone line.  Openreach were appalling to deal with, whereas SSEN were superb.     I always felt that SSEN saw me as a customer who they were obliged to provide a good service to, whereas Openreach were more arrogant in their responsibilities and took a mightier than thou approach.  They (Openreach) also spouted legal mumbo jumbo and tried to charge me for removing the SSEN pole.  SSEN basically just told them it’s their pole on their customers land, and he’s told us to remove that pole, and therefore you need to reroute your line.


Dealing with Openreach was the only major frustration in my project.  Anyone dealing with them my advice would be do not trust them.  


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