Northern Gas Networks issues Saturday night gas update
Last updated Oct 17, 2021
Styan gas hub
Residents collecting electric heaters in Jennyfields this morning

A gas leak is continuing to cause problems in Harrogate.

Engineers from Northern Gas Networks have successfully stopped the leak and are now working to safely restore gas supply to around 3,000 homes.

Follow our live updates below for the latest on the incident.


6.55pm – Northern Gas Networks issues new safety advice

Northern Gas Networks has issued some new safety advice for the 3,000 people affected by the loss of gas.

The update says engineers will work through the night and supplies should start to return tomorrow. It adds:

“To make the process of restoring supplies as quick and safe as possible, engineers are now asking people who have been affected to take some important safety steps.”

Detailed information on what to do, and which homes and streets should do it, is available here.


6.35pm – Huge queue for fish and chips after voucher deal

A queue of close to 100 people has formed outside The Wharfe fish and chip shop on Skipton Road after Northern Gas Networks offered vouchers to those affected by the gas leak.

The queue snaked around the corner onto Knapping Hill as people attempt to end a bad day on a tasty note.

Wharf fish and chips

The start of the queue.


4.30pm – Housebound residents urged to call helpline

Residents who cannot leave their homes due to covid or other reasons have been asked to call Northern Gas Networks customer care team on 0800 040 7766, choosing option 3.

NGN will arrange for somebody to deliver an electric heater and food to their home.


3.50pm – Gas supply not likely to be back on today

The Stray Ferret visited the Styan community centre in Jennyfields again this afternoon. We were told by Northern Gas Networks that the gas supply is not likely to be back on for residents until tomorrow, and it could even be Monday.

Engineers are currently working to safely turn the supply back on for 3,000 homes after they identified the leak this morning.

More electric heaters and hot plates were being delivered to the centre for residents to collect.

Food vouchers are available from the community centre.


3pm – Council deploys volunteers to help effort

North Yorkshire County Council has deployed its Ready for Anything volunteers to help affected residents in Harrogate. The council has a database of volunteers who it contacts in times of emergency.


1.15pm – Food vouchers offered

Northern Gas Networks has posted an update on its website to say that food vouchers can be collected from Styan Community Centre in Jennyfields and redeemed at The Wharf Fish and Chip Shop on Skipton Road, which is open until 8.30pm today.

It says it is working to restore gas supply “as soon as possible”

It has also asked residents to minimise their use of electrical appliances to prevent the electricity network from becoming overloaded:

“Minimise the use of appliances and switch off or unplug any electrical equipment that you do not need and heat only essential rooms, stagger the use of high-demand electrical appliances such as cookers, heaters, kettles, immersion heaters, electric showers, dishwashers, tumble driers and washing machines.”


11.40am – Hydro closed all day

Harrogate Borough Council has tweeted that the Hydro swimming pool will remain closed all day due to the gas leak.


11.30am – Jennyfield Styan Community Centre set up as emergency hub

Will Brewster, site manager for Northern Gas Networks, gave an update to the Stray Ferret at the Jennyfield Styan Community Centre this morning. The centre has been set up as an emergency hub for residents to collect electric heaters until the gas supply is back on.

Mr Brewster said:

  • NGN had to turn the gas supply off for 3,000 homes following the gas leak. The homes affected are above Oakdale Golf Club and southwest of the New Park roundabout.
  • Electric heaters and hot plates are available for residents to collect from the Styan Community Centre, which will be open until the gas supply is back on.
  • NGN has a list of vulnerable residents is currently delivering electric heaters to them to keep warm.
  • They are hoping to get local takeaways in the area up and running with their gas supply today. NGN will be offering vouchers to residents so they can have hot food delivered to their homes this evening.
  • He said they are hoping by the end of the day, the situation will have improved. Engineers are still working to fix the problem.

11.30am – Northern Gas Networks stops leak

Northern Gas Networks has issued a statement on its website to say engineers have stopped the gas leak and are working to get the gas supply back on safely.

The company has asked residents to not try to use central heating, and avoiding taking showers if you have a combi boiler, until further notice.

Incident manager Andy Rodda said:

“We are very sorry for the disruption and inconvenience this is causing and are doing all we can. It is a complex operation because this is a large pipe which needs some specialist deep excavations to enable the repair work. Repairs will probably take most of today, after which we will need to steadily re-introduce gas into the local supply system in a controlled manner before people’s supplies can be fully restored. Safety is absolutely paramount and there are no short cuts, I’m afraid.”


10.50am – Gas leak having big impact on people’s day

Thanks to all the readers who have contacted the Stray Ferret to tell us about how the gas leak is affecting them. You can continue to do that by emailing [email protected]

Amy Barker in Jennyfields said:

“Daughter is in covid isolation so we can’t go anywhere else for heat either.”

Margaret Gorman on Exeter Crescent said:

“No heating or hot water. My husband has Alzheimers keeping him in bed to keep warm.”

Sally Jenkins said:

“I’m right up the back of Jennyfields in Primrose Close. We have no gas so no hob or heating, but fortunately we have an immersion heater for the water and our own electric radiator. I see it as a good excuse for a takeaway tonight!”


10.10am – No official update in 12 hours

The Stray Ferret spoke to Northern Gas Networks on the phone but they were unable to give an estimated time the problem will be fixed and when the gas supply will return to homes. They said engineers have been working throughout the night where the leak occurred on Ripon Road.


9.30am – No gas around Ripon Road and Jennyfields

The Stray Ferret spoke to Mark Hunter who lives near the Co-op on Ripon Road.

He said:

“This morning when I got up at 6am the boiler was on blink and nothing was working. It’s my birthday today. My parents are down this weekend and we had all these big plans. It depends if the restaurants are open. I’m supposed to take my boys swimming, but that’s not opening.”

Sarah Gentle is babysitting on Heather Way in Jennyfields. She says there is no gas for heating or hot water.

“Apart from being a little chilly (kids not complaining) we are OK. Obviously, if it doesn’t get resolved soon could be more of a pain”.

Rian Campbell Lewis works for Knaresborough-based MJ Ryder Limited, which installs boilers. She said their phoneline has been going “crazy” all morning.


8.40am – Reports of boilers not working in Ripon Road area

The Stray Ferret understands some people’s boolers are not working this morning and they don’t have any hot water. Problems seem to be worst in the Ripon Road / Jennyfields area, near where the leak occurred.

Let us know how the gas leak is affecting you by emailing [email protected]


10.40 pm – Avoid showers and central heating, says Northern Gas Networks

People living in the HG1, HG2, HG3 and HG4 areas of Harrogate are being urged to temporarily minimise their gas use.

Northern Gas Networks issued another update at 10.30pm tonight as the stench of gas continues to permeate across large parts of Harrogate.

The update said:

Northern Gas Networks says the incident in Ripon Road is affecting the normal gas pressure in some parts of the town and, by avoiding all non-essential use, people can help ensure there is enough gas in the system to go around everyone.

That means trying not to use central heating, and avoiding taking showers if you have a combi boiler, until further notice. The situation is likely to last into tomorrow.

Operations manager for Northern Gas Networks Stuart Armin apologised for the inconvenience and said engineers would be working 24/7 until the situation was safely resolved.

“Our top priority is to keep people safe and restore normal service as quickly as we can. There is still a smell of gas in the air. I’d like to reassure people that we are safely managing the issue but if they have any concerns at all they can call us. The National Gas Emergency Number 0800 111 999 is open 24-hours for advice and assistance if necessary.”

As a precaution, businesses along Ripon Road past the junction of Jennyfield Drive remain evacuated, including the Co-Op petrol station, Shell garage and the Hydro leisure centre.

A temporary road closure is also in place in Ripon Road and motorists are advised to find alternative routes.


8.45pm – Major gas leak now affecting supplies across Harrogate district

The leak on Ripon Road is now affecting gas supplies in homes across the Harrogate district. This is the latest update from Northern Gas Networks:

Engineers from Northern Gas Networks remain on site at Ripon Road in Harrogate this evening as they deal with a large gas escape.

The incident is temporarily affecting gas supplies to properties in the HG1, HG2, HG3 and HG4 postcodes. There is also a strong smell of gas in the air, although this is expected to dissipate shortly as preparations get under way to start repair work.

As a precaution, businesses along Ripon Road past the junction of Jennyfield Drive have been evacuated, including the Co-Op petrol station, Shell garage and the Hydro leisure centre.

A temporary road closure is also in place to allow the repairs to be carried out as quickly and safely as possible. Motorists using Ripon Road are advised to find alternative routes as this is likely to impact journey times.

Operations manager for Northern Gas Networks Stuart Armin said the situation was being kept safely under control but apologised for the temporary interruption some people were experiencing with their gas supplies, and for the strong smell.

“We realise how inconvenient this must be for people. I’d like to reassure them that the situation is being monitored and we are doing everything we can to restore normal service as soon as we possibly can.

“Hopefully the smell of gas in the outside air will begin to ease shortly but if anyone remains concerned for their safety, please give us a call on the 24/7 National Gas Emergency Number 0800 111 999 for advice and assistance if necessary. That’s what we are there for.

“Until the repairs are complete and everyone’s gas is back to normal, we’ll be working round the clock. We have also instigated our emergency procedures to provide support locally.”


5.50pm – Northern Gas Networks issues update

This is the latest on the incident from Northern Gas Networks:

Engineers from Northern Gas Networks are carrying out emergency repairs to a medium pressure gas main on Ripon Road in Harrogate this evening.

As a precaution, businesses along Ripon Road past the junction of Jennyfield Drive have been evacuated, including the Co-Op petrol station, Shell garage and the Hydro leisure centre.

There currently no effect on gas supply to local homes and businesses however there is a strong smell of gas in the area.

To protect teams and members of the public, a temporary road closure has been introduced to allow the repairs to be carried out.

Motorists using Ripon Road are advised to find alternative routes as this is likely to impact journey times today.


5.30pm – Gas leak unlikely to be fixed tonight

The Stray Ferret understands that the gas leak, which is from a gas main, is unlikely to be fixed tonight.

Engineers are in the area and will be working to fix the issue for as long as necessary.

During a Facebook live we recorded from the scene earlier you will be able to hear a loud hum in the background, which is the sound of the gas pouring out the pipe.


4.55pm – Harrogate Hydro to remain closed

Harrogate Borough Council has confirmed that the Hydro swimming pool will remain closed this evening due to the gas leak.

The pool was evacuated earlier today. It is unclear at this stage if it will be able to reopen tomorrow.


4.50pm – Photo gallery from the road closure

It is unclear when it will be fixed.

Drivers are being diverted away from the area.

Gas engineers are in the area.

The road is closed near the Co-Op petrol station.


4.35pm – Reader’s picture

A reader has shared a picture of Hydro being evacuated this afternoon.


4.30pm – Engineers repairing “medium pressure gas main”

Northern Gas Networks has confirmed that engineers are repairing a “medium pressure gas main”.

The company said in a statement:

“There is no effect on gas supply to local homes and businesses.

“To protect teams and members of the public, a temporary road closure has been introduced to allow the work to be carried out.

“Motorists using Ripon Road are advised to find alternative routes as this is likely to impact journey times today.”


4.10pm – Traffic being diverted away

The road is closed from The Claro Beagle pub and traffic is being diverted down Coppice Avenue away from the works.


4.00pm – Hydro closure

Harrogate Borough Council’s emergency planning department confirms that the Hydro and Little Explorers Nursery have been closed while the work is carried out.


3.40pm Section of Ripon Road closed

Engineers from Northern Gas Networks are on site near the Co-op petrol station trying to fix the problem but it is unclear how long this will take.

Drivers are being warned to avoid the area if possible.

Northern Gas Networks has been working on that section of road for the last month. The works had been delayed but were due to finish on October 22.


 


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