THE extent of the damage done by an arson attack in Grays, which has left many families homeless, has been revealed.

Residents had to leave Martello Close after the fire in an underground car park early on Friday, March 7.

Two cars were destroyed and many more damaged. The blaze also knocked out vital equipment providing gas and electricity to up to 18 homes on the estate.

Resident Andrew Bone, whose two 4x4s were badly damaged in the attack, said families were still in the dark over when they could move back into their homes.

He’s staying on a friend’s sofa, while his wife and two children stay with his mother-in-law in South Ockendon.

Mr Bone said: “The management group still hasn’t really provided us with any updates with what’s happening, and the insurance company hasn’t paid any of the money for the work to start.

“I spoke to a builder the other day and he told me he reckoned it would take at least six to eight weeks. There’s so much that needs to be done.

“My wife is really getting upset about it, and the kids are all out of their normal routine.

“I’ve had to dismantle a bed and take it round for one of my kids to sleep in, and I’ve been darting back and forth to get clothes for everyone.”

A spokesperson from management group Griffin said the extent of the damage was still being assessed.