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Revealed: The areas of Norfolk and Suffolk where 4G phone coverage IS improving

PUBLISHED: 08:14 18 May 2018 | UPDATED: 08:14 18 May 2018

4G coverage has been improved in areas across Norfolk and Suffolk in the last six months, Vodafone says. Picture: GETTY IMAGES

4G coverage has been improved in areas across Norfolk and Suffolk in the last six months, Vodafone says. Picture: GETTY IMAGES

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Mobile phone coverage has vastly improved in towns across the region in the last six months, according to one network.

Rob Matthews, senior manager of mobile phone networks at Vodafone. Photo: ArchantRob Matthews, senior manager of mobile phone networks at Vodafone. Photo: Archant

More than 50 sites have come online in the last six months in Norfolk, Suffolk and Cambridgeshire, senior manager at Vodafone Dr Rob Matthews said.

Of those sites around half are new masts and the other half are upgrades to existing masts.

In Norfolk, 2G, 3G and 4G coverage has been improved in Dereham, Sheringham, Thurlton, Dudwick, Horsford, Ashill, Rollesby, Thetford, Blakeney, Holt and Barford, Vodafone said.

In Suffolk Somersham, Thurston, Elmsett, Melton, Blundeston and Acton have all had new masts or upgrades, while in Cambridgeshire Wisbech, Newborough, Huntingdon, Over and Wimblington have all seen improvements.

The proposed site of the mobile telecoms phone mast in Blakeney at Friary Farm Caravan Park.

Picture: MARK BULLIMOREThe proposed site of the mobile telecoms phone mast in Blakeney at Friary Farm Caravan Park. Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

Dr Matthews said it means 98pc of the population in those counties now had outdoor coverage of 2G and 3G and around 97pc had 4G coverage outdoors.

Last week, a Norfolk County Council survey found one in five phone calls failed to connect and there were still mobile data ‘not-spots’ across the county.

It said thousands of council structures could be used to house new masts.

But Dr Matthews said the networks were working hard to improve signal.

A new mast in Thetford as 
well as an upgrade of an existing mast has meant there has been 
an 80pc reduction in the 
number of calls failing in the area, he said.

“There is a much greater understanding that if you want coverage you need a mast, but we still face objections, particular in rural communities where infrastructure has not been built,” Dr Matthews said.

“We work hard to try to design sites that are sympathetic to the area.”

At Holt rugby club a mast 
was put among the floodlights, while after a mast was rejected 
in Blakeney a smaller one was 
put on the church tower in the village bringing some coverage.

Areas of Norfolk and Suffolk have long been plagued by poor signal and research by this newspaper as well as for the County Council reveals there are still significant ‘not-spots’.

Dr Matthews said the networks were unlikely to achieve 100pc coverage but further signal improvements were in the pipeline.

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