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January 19, 2010 12:00 AM

As most homes in Ambleside regain their gas supply after three and a half days without, MP Tim Farron has called on National Grid to launch an immediate inquiry into the outage so that they can ensure that it doesn't happen again.

Tim said, "National Grid's response to the cut-off has been impressive. Around a hundred staff have been swarming around the town with senior managers based at the Mountain Rescue HQ all working round the clock to restore the connection. However, the loss of gas has caused real hardship to local people, many of whom are elderly and who were left without heat and without means to cook a hot meal. National Grid must launch an immediate and thorough inquiry to make sure that this never happens again".

Mr Farron spent much of the weekend in Ambleside working with residents and National Grid volunteers and was again in Ambleside last night. Tim met with volunteers running the residents support centre at the Parish Centre and then with National Grid managers.

Tim paid tribute to the local community, "The response of the local community in Ambleside has been wonderful. People have been looking after elderly neighbours and helping one another out.

"The district and county councils have worked well together in providing the residents support centre and I'm really grateful to them too.

"After the difficulties caused by the extreme winter conditions, the loss of gas - compounded by several electricity cuts at the same time - was the last thing Ambleside needed. Residents deserve better than this, but they also deserve our admiration for the strength of their response as a community."

Tim is also pressing National Grid to reconnect those properties that remain without supply.