Call the network and some guy was prodding the grass verge with a meter and found the fault a few feet from my phone connection pavement box.
Couple of hours later, diggers etc turn up to find the mains cable.
And yes, the big gap in the middle once had a lead sheathed three phase cable supplying the whole area, and the thin wire just above it?
Yep, the phone lines.
He is of the opinion that it has been breaking down for a few years, and after all the heavy rain we have had, has caused it to fail big time and was probably making the ground live, and causing huge interference on the phone lines, although line tests always came back quiet.
Anyway, power has just been restored and i have checked my line stats and so far, ZERO errors on crc, fecs & es.
Not gonna hold my breath though.