Mobile Phone Campaign
The Craster Community Development Trust is concerned that no mobile telephone signal can be picked up in the village. We wish to assist the Parish Council in trying to get the operators to supply a signal in the village and are raising a petition to show how many people would welcome this improvement.
The geographical situation of Craster, surrounded by rocky crags, means that no mobile telephone signal can reach the village from the existing network infrastructure. This hinders the community in all sorts of ways. People running businesses from within the village cannot just give out a mobile number because they are out of contact whenever they are in the village. People working in the village cannot ring their employers when a problem arises with the job. People making deliveries cannot ring for instructions when there is a query on the delivery. People walking in the district cannot access the emergency services in the event of an accident. People who have become separated from their children are unable to ring them and arrange where they will meet. People in the village are unable to access their friends and family and are unable to take advantage of such everyday services as texting messages.
Michael Craster, the Chairman of the Development Trust, said “Mobile telephones are now part of everyday life for most people, yet residents and visitors to Craster are cut off from this service. We hope that the Parish Council will be able to persuade the operators to improve their service and benefit those residents and visitors. We don’t think the mobile networks are aware of the huge number of visitors who come into Craster, so our petition will help the Parish Council by showing the real level of demand.”
"We the undersigned are concerned at the lack of mobile phone reception in Craster and ask the Parish Council to make every effort to get the mobile telephone operators to supply this service within the Craster area."
Development Trust Hands Mobile Phone Petition to Parish Council - Press Release
The Craster Community Development Trust will hand over a petition to the Craster Parish Council at their meeting on Thursday 16th. July 2009 asking the Parish Council to seek improvements to Mobile Telephone Reception in Craster. The meeting of the Parish Council is open to Press and Public. The petition has been signed by 600 people.
This petition tries to show the real level of need for better mobile telephone reception within the village. Craster has a total population of less than 350 people, so the number of signatures indicates not only the local demand, but also the demand from the visitors who come into the village and are concerned that they are unable to receive the same services as they can in other tourist areas.
The Development Trust believes that the mobile telephone companies are just looking at the population figures for the district when trying to assess the requirement for their services. The petition shows that there is a greater demand than the companies might expect and that many visitors feel disadvantaged when they visit Craster. This is borne out by the fact that these signatures were collected in only three weeks.
Only one of the mobile telephone network companies has responded to recent enquiries from the Parish Council and they have not indicated any immediate plans for improvements in the signal in Craster. The Development Trust hopes that this petition will supply additional evidence which the Parish Council can use to bring pressure to bear on the network suppliers.
Michael Craster , the Chairman of the Development Trust, said “The Development Trust would like to thank all of the venues in the village who have displayed copies of the petition, and all of the people who have gone to those venues and signed the petition to bring to Craster what is now generally considered to be an everyday service. We hope that the petition will be valuable in assisting the Parish Council in their efforts to improve the amenities in Craster.”
Petition Passed to Northumberland County Council
The petition was considered by NCC and they decided to take up our cause.
NCC Response to the village's petition
On october 20th 2009, Giles Ingram, the Executive Director of Visit Northumberland wrote to John Gallon as follows:
Dear Mr Gallon
Our support for extending mobile reception to Craster
I write with regard to your efforts to have mobile' phone reception strengthened in the Craster area.
Craster is a very popular tourist destination on the Northumberland Coast. It attracts a large number of walkers and sight seers and is particularly famous for its kippers and seafood shop.
The lack of mobile reception in the village inconveniences visitors, who find it awkward to contact pubs, restaurants accommodation businesses etc.
We support your campaign and wish you the best of luck.
Executive Director, Visit Northumberland
on June 15th, Michael Craster, then chair od Craster Community DEvelopment Trust wrote to 02
Letter from CCDT to O2
Fyona Robson, Honorary Secretary, Craster Community Trust