Awards night remembers Damilola Taylor and Ben Kinsella

A star-studded awards night is to be held at Alexandra Palace this month, in memory of murdered youngsters Damilola Taylor and Ben Kinsella. The first ever Spirit of London awards, developed by the Damilola Taylor Trust in consultation with other youth or

Charlotte Newton

RESIDENTS and traders were left in the dark in Hornsey on Sunday after enduring a nine-hour power cut - the third power failure in the area in four months.

The blackout, which initially affected 57 properties in Elder Avenue, Rosebery Gardens, Elmfield Avenue and Tottenham Lane, began at 10.30am on Sunday.

A further 114 homes and businesses were left without electricity between 5.15pm and 7.30pm while engineers tried to repair the damaged cable.

Rachel Oakes, 34, of Rosebery Gardens, was one of many residents who was inconvenienced by the power cut.

"It was an absolute nightmare," she said. "It was freezing because I had no heating. I couldn't have a bath because I have an electric boiler, I couldn't use my Hoover, turn the lights on or my computer. It was like being in medieval times and what's worse, this happens about once a month. But EDF has not apologised or explained why we had no electricity."

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The Hornsey YMCA in Tottenham Lane was forced to close its gym after the power cut left fitness enthusiasts in the dark.

A trainer at the gym, who did not want to be named, said: "There was one power cut at 10.15am and then another around 4pm. We had to ask everyone to leave after the second one because there were no lights."

Residents in the area have been blighted with at least three power cuts since August and Liberal Democrat Crouch End councillor David Winskill has vowed to find out why.

Up to 57 customers in Rosebery Gardens and Elmfield Avenue had no electricity between 8pm and 10pm on October 6 - and a further 18 customers in the Tottenham Lane area were left without electricity from 2pm to 7.50pm on August 25.

Cllr Winskill said: "The small shops in Crouch End have taken a real kicking this year and the restaurants and boutiques that had a power cut yesterday really didn't need this.

"I'm talking to Haringey Council to see if we can identify the cause of this failure and will be making strong representations to the power company concerned."

A spokeswoman for EDF said that the most recent power cut had been caused by a third party damaging the underground electricity cables.

She said: "Our engineers were on site within an hour, carrying out work at a nearby substation to locate the cause. Work continued throughout the afternoon and into the evening to repair the damage caused to this section of our underground electricity network.

"In order to repair the damaged section of cable it was necessary to isolate power to a further 114 customers at 5.15pm. Power was restored to all those affected at 7.26pm."

Anyone who has experienced four or more power cuts in a year (running from April 1 to the following March 31), of more than three hours each time, can claim �50 compensation by writing to the company's customer relations department.

A spokeswoman for EDF said the power cut in October was caused by water seeping into a cable through "third party damage". The August cut was also caused by a third party damaging an underground cable, she said.