RESIDENTS hit by the gas-cut crisis in East Barnet will get compensation, National Grid has said.

The company's engineers are involved in last ditch efforts to get all homes reconnected in time for tomorrow's festivities.

But it is still unclear whether this can be achieved.

There is a small crumb of comfort for those affected, however.

Many people have told the Barnet Times that they are concerned about the price of heating their homes using electric fan heaters distributed by National Grid staff.

Customers will be able to claim £30 for each day they are without gas, over and above the first 24 hours.

Businesses who are able to show they have lost income because of the lack of gas will be compensated after being assessed on a “case by case basis”.

Many residents have slammed the response to the crisis although some have adopted a Dunkirk spirit.

Neighbours have been helping each other out, with many looking out for older residents.

Helen Lyon, mother or a three-year-old and a 16-month-old baby called the response “a fiasco” and said those dealing with the crisis had “appalling customer relations.”

“It's utter chaos down at the incident room at St Mary's School - no-one seems to be able to tell you anything, they offer empty promises and are trying to brush you under the carpet.”

“What I can't understand is how such a large organisation such as National Grid don't appear to have a crisis management procedure in place or customer relation strategy with understanding staff able to deal with the public who are clearly having a stressful and unhappy lead up to Christmas.”

Charity worker, Dan Alexander, was very angry his premature baby had been left with one heater and no cooking facilities.

He said: “You ring Transco or British Gas or the council but you get different information from each one of them.

“I've got a four week old baby Raphael who was born four weeks premature so if my mother-in-law wasn't close by I don't know what we would've done.

“The response has been completely inadequate it doesn't seem like the council have a real emergency plan in place like they should.”

National Grid bosses have apologised that residents have been shivering in their homes but have said they are pulling out of all the stops to get residents reconnected as soon as possible.

They have also advised people not to turn their own gas supply back on because it may not be safe.

If you smell gas call the National Gas Emergency service on 0800 111 999.

Did you get reconnected by Christmas? Contact our duty reporter Suruchi Sharma on