OK, this is a bit scary - I just finished writing my previous post, and then went to the National Grid web page that shows live data about gas flow, and was alarmed to see this graph:
What it shows is imports from the Bacton Interconnector falling from nearly 80 million cubic meters (mcm) per day down to zero. To put this in perspective, UK demand today is expected to be about 327 mcm, so that's a quarter of today's gas supply gone missing.
No new response at the time of writing from storage sites, and nothing in the news yet... Let's hope they get it back online soon, or we really may have a problem right now...
UPDATE: the mainstream media has caught up with me:
Britain's wholesale gas prices surged to a record high on Friday, after one of its three gas import pipelines shut down unexpectedly.
The operator of the UK-Belgium Interconnector pipeline said a technical problem had forced the shutdown, without giving more details.
If the pipeline remains shut for a number of days, Britain's grid operator will be forced to trigger all emergency supply options, including reducing demand from contracted users, which will cause an even higher price spike, traders said. source