An apology has been issued after thousands of homes were left without power.

Third party damage to an underground cable at 2.52pm caused 1,546 properties in the Marks Farm estate area of Braintree to lose power on Friday.

It took UK Power Networks from 2.54pm to 5.33pm to restore electricity supplies.

A spokesman would not confirm where the third party work had been taking place, but said it was unconnected to road works in South Street.

The spokesman added: “In an unrelated incident last night, supplies were briefly interrupted to several thousand customers in the Braintree area at 8.09pm after a fault on a piece of equipment at an electricity substation.

“We can appreciate how frustrating this must have been, particularly for those who were affected by the previous problem, and would like to apologise to our customers for the inconvenience caused.

“The fault has been rectified.”