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Driveway battle over BT pole

Reg Haslam wants BT to remove the telegraph pole obstructing his driveway on Hexham Avenue.

Reg Haslam wants BT to remove the telegraph pole obstructing his driveway on Hexham Avenue.

A row has broken out between two pensioners and a telecoms giant over the positioning of a telegraph pole.

Reg and Lynn Haslam, of Hexham Avenue, Cleveleys, moved in to their home two and a half years ago when the BT pole was in front of their wall.

Mr Haslam, 67, moved the wall from behind the pole last year in the hope of making it easier to park his car in the driveway.

But he claims he still struggles to put his car on the drive without it being scratched along the pole, prompting him to ask BT to move it.

The firm say the pole has been in place, on a public highway, since 1993 and so a relocation would come at a cost.

The couple claim they have to manoeuvre their car on to the driveway at an angle and cannot drive straight on to it because it is too narrow, even after Mr Haslam’s own alterations.

They have now spent £720 on repairing the marked Ford Fiesta after it was scratched.

Mrs Haslam, 63, said: “We can move our car past the pole but it’s a struggle and it’s been scratched three times.

“It’s not like we have a big car but we have two inches either side.

“It’s really tight.

“Paying for it to be moved is not something we are willing to do.”

Mr Haslam, a grandfather-of-two, added: “BT think we haven’t got a problem getting on or off the drive.

“We keep getting the car painted but it keeps getting scratched because we have to go out of the drive at an angle instead of going straight backwards or forwards.”

‘Moving the pole will not be free’ - BT

BT has written to Mr and Mrs Haslam and explained they will not be removing the pole free of charge.

The firm could not confirm to The Gazette how much a relocation would cost before carrying out a site survey.

A spokesman for BT Openreach said: “The pole in question was sited in its current location against a wall on the public highway in 1993, before any modifications that may have since been made to the wall and driveway.

“Openreach are able to move the pole if required and are happy to discuss this with Mr and Mrs Haslam.

“However this work would be chargeable and is subject to a full on-site survey.”

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