A pensioner whose gas was turned off by engineers says she has to battle cold nights by taking SIX hot water bottles to bed.
Shirley Walsh, 74, has been left without heating for more than three months after workmen cut her mains supply.
Destitute Shirley said she hasn’t been able to afford to reconnect to the national grid after her husband Joe died six months ago.
Shirley, from Hull, East Yorks., said: “I’m freezing. It was after my husband died things started to go wrong.”
The retired seamstress said she has relied on electric heaters donated by kind neighbours and friends in a bid to keep warm.
She said: “It does get very cold in here. Upstairs it’s freezing.
“To keep warm at night I take six hot water bottles to bed with me.
“After a couple of hours they get cold and I redo them. It’s all I can do to stop me walking around in blankets.
“I’ve got the electric heaters on, and I’m grateful for the electric working, but I do wonder how much it’s costing me. It’s dreadful.
“I can’t cook any tea with the gas off, I can only do bits and bobs in the microwave.”
Shirley said she first started smelling gas last year, but when workmen came to turn off her supply found a leak in her garden.
“I could smell gas in the house for a while so workmen had been coming for a while to the house.
“They’ve found the leak, it’s in my garden, and they said it’s my responsibility.
“I haven’t asked for a cost estimate because I know I won’t be able to pay it. I haven’t got anything.”
A spokeswoman for Northern Gas Networks said: “Our engineers visited Mrs Walsh in November and found a gas escape located inside the property’s internal pipework.
“In order to make the situation safe, we temporarily cut off the gas supply.
“However we ensured Mrs Walsh was provided with cooking facilities and had alternative heating in the meantime.
“This was until a Gas Safe engineer could be arranged to visit the property and carry out the repairs.
“Our customer care team also contacted the local authority to ensure all available support could be given to Mrs Walsh while she was without gas, who took full ownership of the situation.”
Northern Gas said it has been in contact with Hull City Council and had received support from them,
The spokesman added: “The local authority have assured us Mrs Walsh is receiving the support she needs to ensure her gas supply is restored as soon as possible.”
However Shirley said she didn’t recall having any contact with Hull City Council.
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