But rather than bouncing between H and G, it now spends most of it's time on E.
Just noticed what you said there, you do realise that Edge (E), whilst being a 2G technology (defined as 2.9G) is faster than GPRS (G) which is more commonly defined at 2.5G??
Maybe Vodafone have realised their transmitters are currently unable to blanket the Wallasey area with 3G and thus has opted for the next best thing, and optimized performance for Edge instead?
If you were using GPRS in a lot of places, then EDGE would be a noticeable upgrade, so not all bad, but vs 3G (especially HSDPA area's) area's it would be a noticeable downgrade.
In most cases, you should be using Opera Mini for web browsing anyway, even on a regular 3G connection, it significantly improves the speed. Of course for video's, EDGE is going to be tedious lol...