Workers went without showers, punters peered through closed shop windows, and lunchers went hungry in Shoreditch yesterday as a seven-hour power cut plunged part of East London into darkness.
Nearly 2,000 homes and businesses from Aldgate to Old Street lost electricity at 7.23am yesterday morning, and power was not fully restored until mid-afternoon. Even traffic lights went out, causing chaos at the busy four-way junction of Bishopsgate and Shoreditch High Street.
Renowned restaurant St John’s on Commercial Street was forced to close over lunch, along with local branches of Office and Strada. All bore apology notes to customers in their windows until the early afternoon.
Residents were left feeling disgruntled.
“It was just so annoying,” said Lauren Barnes, a 21-year-old student who lives off Commercial Street. “I couldn’t shower, the freezer stopped working, and there was no internet for hours. I had to have a candlelit bath.”
EDF Energy attributed the blackout to an underground cable fault and apologised to the 1,842 customers affected.