A man forced to evacuate his house and left without gas for days after a gas leak led to the discovery of a sinkhole says people have been “treated like an inconvenience”.

Households in the Malvern Road area in Maida Vale and Kilburn are still suffering knock-on effects of the leak, with some unable to return to their homes days later.

Some 50 homes and 120 people were cleared in a mass evacuation on January 4 after a 24-inch gas main ruptured.

As Cadent gas network engineers tried to stem the leak, they discovered a sinkhole under the road caused by a burst waste water main.

Brent & Kilburn Times: A look at the sinkholeA look at the sinkhole (Image: Cadent / London Fire Brigade)

Brent Council initially offered temporary accommodation at centres including Immaculate Heart of Mary’s Church on Stafford Road and Granville Plus Family Centre on Carlton Vale – but having to flee their homes and the lack of guidance at the time meant many were unsure of how to get help.

Days later, some households have been allowed to return, but a few are still without a date on when they can go back to their home.

Residents in Malvern Mews are unable to have their gas supply restored until Thames Water has fixed the waste water pipe.

Simon Wookey, 52, was only able to return home on Saturday (January 6), but is among the people without any access to gas.

Mr Wookey, who has lived in the area for 10 years since coming to the UK, is now having to cancel work meetings as he sorts out warm accommodation elsewhere.

He said: “There is no timeline that has been given to use as to when we’re going to get it (gas).

“We’ve had to make an inquiry as to whether or not a temporary line can be patched in or restored while they’re making repairs, but we have had no answer.

“We’re mushrooms, we’re kept in the dark and fed a load of c**p.”

Brent & Kilburn Times: Simon WookeySimon Wookey (Image: Handout)

He said Cadent has been the most helpful in providing some updates to residents, but it has been difficult getting communication from both Brent Council and Thames Water.

Gas supplier Cadent said today (January 8) that engineers have secured the gas pipe permanently and all properties are now clear of gas.

But until Thames Water has finished the sinkhole repairs and the ground around the hole is stabilised, Cadent says it cannot restore the supply to the remaining homes.

Mr Wookey said: “We’re sort of waiting for a lot of information to come back and the rumour is that this isn’t going to be something fixed in days – it could be weeks, if not months.”

After spending the entire weekend trying to call representatives from Cadent, Brent Council and Thames Water, and struggling to get informative responses, he added: “We’re tired of being treated like an inconvenience. It’s the lack of co-ordination or the lack of talk between various people.”

Brent & Kilburn Times: Fire services at the sceneFire services at the scene (Image: London Fire Brigade)

The gas leak reportedly started at 4.50pm, but Mr Wookey was not there at the time and arrived later in the evening.

While he smelt gas, he said “it didn’t seem to be a great urgency or rush” and it was only later on when someone banged on his door for the evacuation.

He explained: “I was looked around trying to figure out where to go, what’s happening. And suddenly I have people yelling at me and I’m just asking where to go. It was a very strange environment to be in and there was no discussion of what was happening or where to go.”

A 25-metre cordon was put in place and people were warned to stay away from the area and keep windows and doors closed.

The sinkhole discovered was reportedly around four metres in diameter and four metres deep.

Brent & Kilburn Times: Fire services at the sceneFire services at the scene (Image: London Fire Brigade)

Brent Council only alerted people later in the night that temporary accommodation centres were set up, but by that time some people had reportedly reserved hotel rooms expecting this would be compensated.

Cadent has said that any requests for compensation should go to Thames Water.

Mr Wookey said: “If we knew or were given a sort of timeline we could all make plans around this. It just feels like residents were the last to be informed and that our concerns or needs were incidental.”

Anyone on Malvern Mews without gas is asked to share contact details on boxNorthLondonCustomerTeam@cadentgas.com to be kept up to date.

If you need further assistance because you are off gas, email or call the Cadent gas enquiry line on 0800 389 8000.

Thames Water has been approached about how long the repair will take.

Brent Council said if your property is within the cordon and you are unable to stay with friends and family, please contact 020 8937 1234 for further support.