**Updated: Power has now been restored to the affected properties**
A major power cut has hit York city centre this afternoon (Wednesday).
It has affected numerous retailers and hospitality businesses in streets including Coney Street, Lendal and Museum Street.
When it first happened at about 3pm 470 premises were affected. According to Northern Powergrid, by 7pm 160 customers are still without power.
The company says the problem is a fault on the underground cable network.
A Northern Grid spokesperson said they originally hoped to have the electricity restored by 4.35pm. But now the estimated restoration time is 9pm.
Among the shops shut by the power failure are WH Smith and Boots on Coney Street.
It has affected one side of Coney Street reaching from Boots up to Holland and Barrett, which is in darkness. Its next door neighbour American Candy has power.
A staff member of one affected store said the power failed suddenly on both sides of the street – but quickly returned to shops on the other side, including Sports Direct.
Shops and food outlets on Lendal were also hit by the power outage. Middle Feast, for example, was lit by a single candle. Spring Espresso was another business in darkness.
But the Banks Musicroom opposite still had power.
On Museum Street, the Pizza Express in the former Yorkshire Club building was in darkness.
Staff there said they had to ask diners to leave without paying, as they had no means to take electronic payments or operate the tills.
They were anxious for the power to return quickly as they had scores of diners booked tonight, and fridges full of perishable stock.
Traffic lights were also hit. York Travel tweeted: “Major power fail to the north of Lendal Bridge, affecting multiple of traffic signals in the area. Please drive carefully.”
A spokesperson from Northern Powergrid said: “At around 3pm today around 470 customers in the YO1, YO30 and YO31 postcode areas were affected by a power cut as a result of a fault on our underground cable network.
“Our engineers took action to remotely restore power to more than 230 customers within six minutes by safely switch electricity through alternative routes on our network.
“By just after 4pm more than 310 customers’ power had been restored and our teams are working to restore supplies to those customers still affected.
“We thank our customers for their patience whilst we carry out the necessary repairs to restore their electricity supplies.”