Villagers cut off by malicious cable theft

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Hundreds of residents have been left without a phone line for nearly a week after £16,000 of copper cabling was stolen.

Thieves stole 750 metres of telephone cabling from Sudbury Road, Acton, between 5pm on Thursday and 10am the following day.

Police believe the culprits broke into two concrete BT boxes, before cutting the cable at both ends and taking it.

The theft resulted in around 230 homes in the village and nearby Newmans Green being left without a working phone line and unable to access the internet.

“We have had nothing since Thursday night,” said Jake Smith, who lives in Tamage Road.

“There is no internet, no phone line, no nothing. It is a real pain.”

Among the other streets to have been affected are Browns Close and Barrow Hill, but Mr Smith said his mother-in-law, who lives in Queensway, had not experienced any problems.

“We have not had much information from BT but we were told pretty early on it could be up to a week with no landline or internet,” he said.

“There are several elderly people who live nearby and if they do not have a mobile phone and had an accident they would be in trouble.

“There should definitely be something in the way of compensation.”

A spokesman for BT said engineers were attempting to fix the damage as quickly as possible.

“We have suffered malicious cuts and theft of underground cabling, which is affecting some services in the area at the moment,” he said.

“We have around 230 reported faults from people affected by this attack on the network.

“We are hoping to have all restored by the end of the week but will know more once the reconnection jointing works gets under way.”