8:00am Thursday 22nd May 2014
By Will Mata
THE OWNER of a busy service station is having a ‘nightmare’ month following a fault on his phone line.
John Stayte Services on the A38 at Whitminster lost its phone connection on April 28 and then the line which feeds the chip and pin machine went on May 12.
The business rapidly began losing money as most customers pay by card and manager Mike Stayte has now been forced to pay for a temporary card machine.
Despite a clear break in the cable, Openreach, which maintains the infrastructure network on behalf BT, has not yet made the necessary repairs.
Mr Stayte has been told repairs cannot be carried out until May 30 – which he says is not quick enough as the business is losing money because of the fault.
Before the temporary card machine was installed, takings dropped from£20,000 per day to just £5,000 per day as Mr Stayte said 80 per cent of customers pay by card.
The business is still unable to operate the Fuel Card discount service.
Mr Stayte said the lack of action was ‘totally unacceptable’.
“We are a thriving local business which has been hamstrung, “ he said.
“It’s been a nightmare. They just don’t care about local businesses.”
Openreach is the infrastructure division of BT.
A spokesman for BT said: “Openreach is working on the fault and needs to fit 15 metres of new duct tape and a new joint box.
“Any problem is regrettable but the priority is always to restore affected services, which is what it is doing.
“Openreach advises those affected to contact their service provider to see if they can divert incoming calls to an alternative number until the repairs are complete.”
lThe SNJ recently reported how Mr Stayte was offering a £500 reward for information leading to the conviction of thieves who stole eight gas cylinders from John Stayte Services at Whitminster at 9.45pm on Saturday, April 26.
Since then, the total amount being offered has risen to £600.
The extra money was put up by Roger Budgen of The Green Shop in Bisley, whose business has been targeted in the past.
Call police on 101 quoting incident 382 of April 28.
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