Mobile phone companies are taking an earful from Spalding residents according to the results of a study by the Countryside Alliance.
It showed that people living outside the UK’s biggest cities are on average about four times more likely to suffer missed calls from their mobiles than people living in places like Leicester and Nottingham.
The Spalding Guardian decided to find out what people in our town think and while some were satisfied with the service from their network, others were frustated by poor reception and missed text messages.
Sandra Smith (66), of Donington, said: “The service is OK in Spalding but when you go out into the villages, it’s really dire.
“One of the worst places is Wigtoft which has one pub where you have to stand in the car park to make a call.”
Clare Martin (26), of Weston, said: “I get a fine signal in Spalding, but Weston and Moulton are complete black-spots.
“Hopefully, 3G (mobile technology) is improving round the area to help us.”
But there was better news from Scott Reedman (31), of Helmsley Way, Spalding, who said: “I’ve never had a problem with my network and I always seem to have a good service, even in the middle of Yorkshire where my brother lives.
“I get better value on my tariff and I seem to get a good service wherever I am.”
Terry Roberts (49), of Pennygate, Spalding, said: “My signal is good but my wife, who does a lot of work online, is finding hers to be very slow and it’s a pain in the neck.
“Sometimes, she can’t even get a signal in Spalding which makes it a bit of a backwater, even though it’s a nice town to live in.”
Mark Ulyatt, of Spalding, said: “I find that a lot of my calls are going straight to voicemail or just ringing a number of times without answer.
“When people leave a message, it’s often several hours before I get a text although it’s been a bit better recently.”
Alaska Bates (16), of Spalding, said: “Sometimes when I’m out in the town or other areas my mobile doesn’t work and it’s very frustrating.”
Meanwhile, some Vodafone customers in Spalding faced disruption because of an antenna fault earlier this week.
Dave Scott, of London Road, said: “The network was down for over four hours on Monday and I was on the phone for more than one and a half hours to Vodafone staff, but it just seems like they don’t give a damn about service in rural areas.”
A Vodafone spokesman said: “There was a problem with an antenna at one of our sites in the area which was resolved on September 19, but there was also a two-hour network outage on Monday while we put a permanent fix on the antenna.
“Everything should be working at the moment and we would like to apologise to customers for any inconvenience they experienced as a result.”