Porting in from Shell energy to Vodafone

I'm in a nightmare working on behalf of my vulnerable mother who needs a landline moving across from Shell energy (who say they can't provide a service to her new home) to vodafone (who say they can). She had an old fashioned landline which will now be via fibre/broadband with Vodafone at her new address. Shell and Vodafone don't have a porting agreement I've just discovered after 12 hours of frustration on webchat, phone and sitting in a shop with a human being. Shell now says I will have to terminate the contract to release the number so Vodafone can "snatch it" while Vodafone says they need the contract to remain live until they have the number but that Shell is declining to give it!!!! I'm at the end of my tether. Meanwhile my vulnerable mother hasn't had a phone for weeks and can't use the basic mobile I bought her ... any ideas gratefully received!! Thank you


  • littleboo
    littleboo Posts: 1,468
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    edited 5 February at 4:28PM
    Refer them both to Ofcom General Condition C7.6 which came into effect last April:

    C7.6 All Regulated Providers shall ensure that: 
    (a) they provide Number Portability on reasonable terms and conditions to any Switching Customer who so requests;  (b) they provide Number Portability for a minimum of one month after the date of termination by the Switching Customer of the contract for the provision of the Relevant Communications Service(s), unless the Switching Customer expressly agrees otherwise at the point when they terminate the contract;

    which is broadly in line with what Shell are saying


    EDIT: As pointed out below, you are moving house, not just porting (which I missed) which complicates things
  • iniltous
    iniltous Posts: 2,981
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    edited 5 February at 4:22PM
    Number portability is the device to move a phone number between providers not between addresses , if the wanted phone number was in use by Shell at the old address , and your mother has moved house , and now wants to use VF ( because Shell wouldn’t provide service at the new address ) it  may fail , for the simple reason the addresses won’t match when VF ask Shell to port the number, basically the port system will reject the request because of this difference in addresses.

    Separately,  do you know if your mother moved within the same local exchange area, or moved to a different exchange  area , if the new address and old address are not on the same exchange , then that number would not be portable anyway , even if the same company were used at both addresses , the number couldn’t be ported , because the new address is on a different exchange to the old address.

    The normal portability ‘journey’ requires you to leave notification of the old provider with the new provider, so the customer ( not moving address just moving provider ) would sign up with VF , they tell Shell to port the number to VF , you don’t independently cancel with Shell.

    Because of moving home ( not compatible with porting ) and your old provider ( Shell ) getting out of the phone/broadband business , and , IMHO  you are dealing with two companies that are not particularly good at doing the basics let alone something out of the ordinary, chances are you won’t get the number back and will need VF to allocate any old phone number , then at least your mother can make calls , as far as receiving incoming calls , you will need to let those that may want to  call your mother know what the new phone number is , it’s not what you would prefer but I suspect it’s the only real option 
  • Yogoid
    Yogoid Posts: 2
    First Post
    Crikey, thanks both very much. This is my first ever post on a forum so I'm very grateful for such a swift helpful response, thank you! 
    Yes there's a house move involved but within the same town, so it's the same exchange. 
    I wasn't familiar with the term porting until one of the companies used in connection with this so I've just used their phrase and didn't realise the subtlety but thanks for pointing out.
    Thank you for all your comments it's so helpful to have this batted around I'm so not a techy person and also don't appreciate such poor service it's caused vast stress not only because of bad service but also the worry for my mum and for me about my mum.... all because Shell said they could supply a service but then didn't tell me when they couldn't...
    Yesterday I adopted the plan of vodafone providing me with a 'temporary' number for an activation day, Shell cancelling the order the day before activation and for me to call Vodafone on the day of activation so that they can 'snatch' the old number when it's been made available ... who knows what will happen!!!! 
    Thank you for all your advice. It's so appreciated in this now not so lonely and frustrating place :-) 
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