Tracing / fixing a damaged spur

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Exactly. Check to see if it is on the socket circuit.

It may have been supplied from a different circuit, such as an immersion circuit for example.

A 1990s house is likely to have chipboard floors, and electricians avoid getting these up - so don't waste too much time looking for junction boxes under floors. You may be able too see if a board has been lifted at some time, or a hatch cut into the floor.

Have you looked for a junction box in the loft?

Even if the loft seems far away from the accessory in question, it's amazing what an electrician will do to avoid lifting chipboard floors.

The consumer unit is another place where power can be tapped off from.

Anything in the bathroom that could supply it? Anything under the bath tub? Whirlpools were all the rage in the 90s.

Or you may have a FCU somewhere that supplies the socket in question, possibly wired up wrongly with it's fuse removed which could perhaps cause the fault you describe. Clutching at straws here, but stranger things have happened.
 
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It sounds like this is one of those faults where if you want the socket working you're going to need to get under the floor, in the loft and make a minor mess to resolve it. Those choc blocks need to be replaced with a more appropriate connection and enclosure, better still if the opportunity arises during the fix I'd replace the cable.

Going on the sketch if it was me I would have spurred off the ring somewhere near the two existing sockets so peel back the carpet there and see if any floorboards look like they have been up previously or an access panel cut if it's a chipboard floor.

As has already been mentioned the cable could run up into the loft and come back down in an airing cupboard and pickup the socket circuit there (landing socket perhaps) or it could have been spurred off the boiler/immersion circuit.

Finally what's in the room directly below this one, is there a socket on the same wall? It's unlikely but not impossible that it's been spurred off a socket downstairs.
 
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Thank you everyone for these suggestions. Looks to me like the plan is to see which circuit is supplying it and then start searching more deeply. There is a lot of odd wiring in the loft so I am crossing my fingers that it is there rather than under the floor...
 
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PS. Might I just double-check a question from my initial post? Would any of the cable finders that you can buy help with locating the junction box?
Despite some poor reviews, I have found one of these:


to be reasonably useful when tracking lead and copper pipes in my wall, before drilling.
Out of curiosity I used it to trace cables and it did well! (After a rewire I know where all my cables go :) ).
It may be worth trying one, and it can always be returned if it is useless!?
 
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I’ve done some digging in the loft. Access is almost impossible: the corner where the socket is where the eves reach the floor of the loft space (there is a sloping ceiling in the bedroom). It is also behind the water tank. And then it is boxed in by the pipework which is all on that side. It could not be a worse place! The wiring looks pretty awful up there: I think more work has been done than I expected. I think it could be the wire I’ve highlighted in yellow since I can’t imagine what else that might be and it has been run in the right place. Although I am not very good at identifying wires visually so I guess it may be a lighting cable.

As you can see from the second photo, it dives down by one of the walls so tracing it is going to be a bit awkward.

I may give up on this one unless I find the socket is actually wired off another circuit. I haven’t tested that yet because I need to keep the power on in other rooms today.
 

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I’ve done some digging in the loft. Access is almost impossible: the corner where the socket is where the eves reach the floor of the loft space (there is a sloping ceiling in the bedroom). It is also behind the water tank. And then it is boxed in by the pipework which is all on that side. It could not be a worse place! The wiring looks pretty awful up there: ...
Access to some things may be difficult but, in terms of 'neatness' etc., I wouldn't describe that wiring as "pretty awful", since it is much neater than you will find in many a loft (including mine!).
.... think it could be the wire I’ve highlighted in yellow since I can’t imagine what else that might be and it has been run in the right place. Although I am not very good at identifying wires visually so I guess it may be a lighting cable. ... As you can see from the second photo, it dives down by one of the walls so tracing it is going to be a bit awkward.
Do the two cables we see here 'disappear down the same hole'? ..

1659879748438.png


If they do, I think my first guess (and, obviously, nothing more than a wild guess) would be that what we are seeing is a ring circuit with those two cables going to a socket (but obviously not the socket of interest, since it has only one cable).

It's obviously difficult to tell from a photo, but that cable looks as if its probably 'bigger' than one would normally expect on a lighting circuit.
I may give up on this one unless I find the socket is actually wired off another circuit. I haven’t tested that yet because I need to keep the power on in other rooms today.
As I said before, determining which circuit the socket is on would be a very useful first step, since it would 'narrow down' what further investigation was worthwhile (if practical).

As you say, if it proves too difficult, the pragmatic answer might be to 'give up' - although it could be argued that you shouldn't really leave in service something which clearly has a problem. For example, it's not totally impossible that, say, a rodent has nibbled through the neutral of the cable, and done goodness-knows how much damage to other parts of the cable!

Kind Regards, John
 
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Usually a cable has some info stamped on (usually only) 1 side (its a sod to read especially in a dingy loft), an example I have is:
CMK BASEC ELECTRIC CABLE BS 6004 6242Y H 2 x 1 +1mm² 300/500 V CE 2019
hopefully others will say if I'm guessing wrongly, but I imagine it starts with manufacturer / tradename and might end with year of manufacture (reasonable in my case as I bought it about 2 years ago). So you might be able to spot an "odd one out" which is worth looking at further.
 
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Usually a cable has some info stamped on (usually only) 1 side (its a sod to read especially in a dingy loft), an example I have is:
CMK BASEC ELECTRIC CABLE BS 6004 6242Y H 2 x 1 +1mm² 300/500 V CE 2019
hopefully others will say if I'm guessing wrongly, but I imagine it starts with manufacturer / tradename and might end with year of manufacture (reasonable in my case as I bought it about 2 years ago). So you might be able to spot an "odd one out" which is worth looking at further.
Yes, IF there are dates on the cables (and IF they are accessible/visible/readable) they could be very valuable to the OP. Most of the (red+black) cables will presumably be the originals, dating from the 1990s, whereas the (brown+blue) one feeding the socket of interest will have a 21st century date.

Kind Regards, John
 
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Access to some things may be difficult but, in terms of 'neatness' etc., I wouldn't describe that wiring as "pretty awful", since it is much neater than you will find in many a loft (including mine!).
This lot didn’t look too bad: it was the random lengthy coils of wire that seemed to be attached to the lighting circuits that really bothered me!
Do the two cables we see here 'disappear down the same hole'? ..

View attachment 276215

If they do, I think my first guess (and, obviously, nothing more than a wild guess) would be that what we are seeing is a ring circuit with those two cables going to a socket (but obviously not the socket of interest, since it has only one cable).
Yes: they do. The only problem is that there isn’t a socket anywhere near there (which is the wall between the bathroom and the bedroom). Perhaps there was one once. The difficulty is not being able to get anywhere near the far end of the cable with an arrow to see where it goes (and whether there is another side of the ring coming up).
Usually a cable has some info stamped on (usually only) 1 side (its a sod to read especially in a dingy loft), an example I have is:
CMK BASEC ELECTRIC CABLE BS 6004 6242Y H 2 x 1 +1mm² 300/500 V CE 2019
hopefully others will say if I'm guessing wrongly, but I imagine it starts with manufacturer / tradename and might end with year of manufacture (reasonable in my case as I bought it about 2 years ago). So you might be able to spot an "odd one out" which is worth looking at further.
I hadn’t realised that. That’s really helpful. Thank you. Now just need to work out a way of getting close enough to read them...
 
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Presumably we are looking for a grey sheathed cable, if it it has blue and brown cores.

(Yes, I know there is always smoke free cable etc.)

Can you send a few photos of the room, and the socket wiring in question?

You never know, it may lead a few good educated guesses based on experience.
 
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Presumably we are looking for a grey sheathed cable, if it it has blue and brown cores. ... (Yes, I know there is always smoke free cable etc.)
Very good point. If (as it should be) the cable at the socket is grey-sheathed, then that ought to make life much easier for the OP (unless the sheath changes colour at some hidden JB or at an as-yet-unfound accessory!). The cables we have so far been shown in the roof space all appear to be white.

Kind Regards, John
 
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Another possibility is that there may have been a socket in an unwanted location, and someone has jointed in the wall, and spurred off this joint with a new cable to the new socket position.

Have we actually determined if the new socket is connected to the socket circuit?
 
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Have we actually determined if the new socket is connected to the socket circuit?
Seemingly not. Since I first asked the question, all we've heard is .....
.... unless I find the socket is actually wired off another circuit. I haven’t tested that yet because I need to keep the power on in other rooms today.

Kind Regards, John
 
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I'm sure it will make more sense if I read through again but can you confirmthe socket of concern is somewhere below the blue arrow?
1659906476376.png

I believe there is nothing below the red arrow.
This may sound strange but my first impression is the highlighted cable looks a bit wide and could be a 3core & earth measuring from your pics I make the cable to be about 11mm wide points to 2.5mm²T&E or 1.5mm²3C&E,
is there a light switch or fan isolator switch or pull cord switch anywhwere near the red arrow or further along the wall to right of red arrow?
Any idea what the thin cable is? Telephone, ethernet, TV coax(my least likely option)?

Where are the red and blue arrows and the brick wall by red arrow on this sketch?
1659907578687.png
 
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With 6 cables running down that wall there should be something visible

Are either of these options close to your pictures? green arrow = second set of 3 cables
1659910147847.png
 

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