PEOPLE living in Kempshott have been faced with confusion after a fault while repairing phone lines following a major outage has left them receiving each other’s calls.

On June 8 Hampshire County Council’s contractors accidentally damaged network cables while undertaking piling works at Brighton Hill Roundabout.

Thousands of residents, businesses and Basingstoke hospital were left without internet and phone lines, some for more than a week.

While most have been reconnected, some residents in Kempshott have faced a second, unexpected, problem – their phone numbers have been swapped.

READ MORE: Repair work continues almost a week after thousands were left without internet and phone lines

Carole Barlow first noticed the problem when using her landline to call her daughter’s mobile phone and a different number appeared.

She said: “It is very strange because we wouldn’t have known anything about it, but my daughter visited and she lost her mobile phone in the house.

“She used the landline to call her phone, it was ringing but she said ‘this isn’t your number mum’.”

Carole rang her landline number and was greeted by another resident in Kempshott.

“I suggested he ring his number and he got another man in Kempshott,” Carole said. “Nobody really knows why or what happened.”

The confused resident posted the issue on Facebook and the community site Nextdoor. A number of people responded saying that they were facing the same problem.

SEE MORE: County councillor calling for compensation for residents affected by internet outage

“You would just think you weren’t getting many phone calls or getting wrong numbers. It is a bit dodgy if you needed to get hold of anyone urgently,” she said.

Carole contacted her provider TalkTalk after she discovered the problem and was told that the matter would be investigated by an Openreach engineer.

An Openreach spokesperson told the Gazette: “As part of the ongoing work to repair our network in Basingstoke our engineers have had to replace multiple underground cables. After this kind of engineering work we do occasionally get crossed lines; we currently have a very small number of people reporting this problem in the Kempshott area and we're working to rectify the situation quickly as possible.

“We’re very sorry for any inconvenience caused and would ask that anyone still experiencing problems contact their service provider to report a fault if they haven’t done so already.”

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