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These Newcastle students got a free night in a hotel from their estate agent

How did you celebrate your deadlines?

Last Thursday, four Newcastle University students living in Jesmond lost all of their power for over eight hours. Due to renovations next door, they had no lighting, electricity, wifi or heating. As a result their estate agent paid for them all to stay in the New Northumbria Hotel for the night.

The girls live on Coniston Avenue in West Jesmond, and whilst building work was being done next door a contractor moved some wires and caused the fusebox to "explode". Although they were told that the problem would be solved within a couple of hours, the students found themselves still in the pitch black at 10pm.

When asked how she felt about the situation, one of the girls, third-year Ffion, described it as "essentially just being in the Stone Age."

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Everyone should have a headtorch handy

"We were sat in the pitch black for hours, and after a while the emergency light in the hall ran out of charge. We had to rely on our phone torches and a head-torch…Obviously we had to be careful we didn't run out of battery, because we had no way to charge our phones. Appreciate your electricity, you don't realise what you have until lose it."

When the girls spoke to the contractors, they were told that the fuse box next door had "fireworks" coming out of it. Eventually the National Grid turned up, who said that the only safe solution was to turn off all the power in West Jesmond, including the Metro, Sainsbury's and Lonsdale's.

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Jenny told The Tab: "Eventually they decided that turning everyone's power off wasn't this best option. Whilst this was all happening, my housemate went to the upstairs toilet and when she flushed it the pipe burst, so we now have a leak which is going down all the walls and the ceiling and a sink full of piss-water. The whole situation was made so much worse when we tried to have bread and butter but realised that the butter was mouldy."

The National Grid decided that a member of staff would have to sit outside the house all night in a van to make sure that the fuse box didn't spark and therefore "set the whole house on fire."

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Home sweet home

Another of the housemates, third-year medic Amy, told The Tab that: "We decided to phone our estate agent and break the news to her. She was very confused, but decided that we would have to stay in a hotel.

We just packed a bag and then were sent to the New Northumbria. We checked in, abused the bath and freebies, and then got our free buffet breakfast the next morning. It was quite a nice, relaxing break actually."

The following day the road in front of the house was dug up and everything was re-wired, and the power had returned by lunchtime. So if you ever get a bit bored of your student house and fancy somewhere a bit cleaner, you know what to do. Explode your fuse box.