A LIGHTNING strike blacked out 1,200 Hampshire homes yesterday.

A pylon in Old Park Road, Bishop's Sutton, near Alresford, was damaged after it was struck at around 3pm.

Southern Electric (SSE) had engineers on site from 3.50pm and restored power to 1,000 properties by 5.30pm after rerouting power from other pylons.

Generators were used to provide power to the rest of the properties, which were brought back online by 2am yesterday morning (weds).

An SSE spokesman said: “It is quite a rare occurrence for lightning to strike our pylons as we have diverters to keep it away from the network.

"It was unfortunate and we do whatever we can to prevent it from happening. We would like to thank our customers for their patience during this incident.”

The spokesman added repairs would be carried out on the pylon in the next few days.