FURIOUS villagers have been left without internet or a phone connection for nearly a month after a lorry smashed into a telegraph pole.

Chaos hit the village of Stapleford on January 29 after a HGV vehicle accidentally ploughed into the pole on Broomheath Lane, leaving homes and nearby businesses without telephone, internet and even TV access.

Dozens of residents have repeatedly contacted BT to resolve the matter but were told it was too much for one engineer to rectify, before scheduling a date to come out and failing to turn up.

With BT failing to provide a temporary fix, three weeks later, disgruntled villagers are still no closer to getting their connection back.

Caroline Doherty, who runs the Walk Mill, said she’s experienced a severe drop in trade because her credit card machine is out of action.

She said: “We’ve two business lines and luckily we’ve managed to divert phone lines to a mobile line but we’ve had no internet and can’t use any credit cards – it’s a massive inconvenience.”

She added: “We order stuff online and had to completely change the company because lots of customers can’t pay.”

Resident Mark Bevan said BT’s lack of communication with the village had been ‘appalling’.

“Not a shred of consideration has been given to the affected people.

“Elderly people are cut off from society, not to mention how much money we’ve had to spend using mobile phones.

“Children have to stay at school to do their homework, it’s like we’re living in the outback,” he said.

A BT spokesperson said: “Openreach wish to apologise for the delay in restoring service to phone users in Broomheath Lane.

“Engineers need to erect a new pole before reconnecting via a new overhead cable but are unable to complete the work because of the proximity of a high pressure petrol line.

“Contractors are meeting with the British Pipe Association this week to discuss a way forward.

“It’s not possible to provide a completion date until after the meeting but engineers are doing all they can to complete this repair as quickly as possible.”