Misery caused by gas mains digging

HOLE LOT OF BOTHER -- Adrian Renshaw at the bottom of his driveway where the hole was dug.
HOLE LOT OF BOTHER -- Adrian Renshaw at the bottom of his driveway where the hole was dug.
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A man’s car was marooned on the driveway of his Mansfield home for two weeks because of work being carried out to replace gas mains.

Now he wants to warn other residents in the town of the problems and delays that might be inflicted on them.

Angry Adrian Renshaw (50), who lives on Paul Avenue with his 83-year-old mother, Janet, claimed their lives were made a misery. “It just wasn’t good enough,” he said,

Mr Renshaw complained several times to National Grid, who commissioned JPB Utilities Ltd to do work that included “digging a dirty great hole” at the bottom of his drive.

He left his car on the drive after being told he wouldn’t have access for just a couple of days. But instead, the work went on for a fortnight, and he couldn’t drive anywhere.

“While the work was being done, she had to go to a funeral in Peterborough, but I couldn’t drive her there,” said Mr Renshaw. “A cousin had to come up from Letchworth to take her.

“It also made it difficult for my mum to get out of the house and on to the street. She had to cut across the lawn, which wasn’t good considering she had a nasty fall just before Christmas.”

Continued Mr Renshaw: “If only they’d been honest and clear about the information they gave us at the start, I wouldn’t be so bothered.

“However, they gave us only 24 hours’ notice of the work, when it should be five days’. And when they asked us to turn the gas off for a couple of hours, it ended up being 33 hours, which left us with no cooking facilities.”

Neighbours on Paul Avenue also complained to National Grid. And just before the work was finally completed, an official visited the Renshaws’ home to offer £100 in compensation.

But Mr Renshaw said: “I’m more concerned about work like this affecting other people, especially the elderly, than any compensation. At my previous home in Stockport, they left a gas leak which wasn’t detected for six months.”

A spokeswoman for National Grid said: “We would like to apologise for the inconvenience caused to Mr Renshaw and his family.

“It was necessary to dig a hole in his drive but, unfortunately, owing to operational difficulties, engineers were not able to complete the work as originally envisaged. The hole has now been reinstated.”