Billy and Avril Moran at their business premises in Legan this week. Photo by Shelley Corcoran.
The main protagonists behind a south Longford business have spoken of their dismay at the latest setback to hit the National Broadband Plan.
Legan based vehicle and machinery sales specialists Billy Moran & Sons are among a clutch of firms waiting anxiously for the Government's much vaunted plan to be rolled out.
So, when news filtered through over the weekend that SSE had become the latest bidder to withdraw from the tendering process, the reaction was one of overwhelming despondency.
“I came into the family business in 2014 and ever since I have been crying out for broadband,” said Avril Moran.
Besides her gripe at the decision of SSE to pull out from the plan, she hit out at how rural businesses were being impacted on by the delay.
“The crazy thing is there are three businesses - Green Farm Foods, ourselves and Klassmann-Deilmann Ireland Ltd.
“E-fibre cables were put in either side of us but the businesses who are paying rates, taxes and so on were forgotten about. I am so frustrated.”
In a further revelation, Avril said the company is paying €120 a month for a combined landline, broadband and mobile phone package despite the business having no access to high speed broadband.
She even splashed out on a dongle last year and even tried pointing a satellite dish to a nearby mobile phone mast to try and improve signal capabalities.
As for her take on the most recent stumbling block to the NBP, Avril said, “"When is this going to stop? This country is just so backward and behind the likes of the UK and US and businesses just seem to be forgotten about.
“We are trying to keep the gates open, we pay revenue, rates and we are trying to keep things going but we are just forgotten about.”