VIRGIN Media customers faced around five hours of issues with TV services on Sunday.

The problem appeared to surface at around 3.30pm across the country.

The issue sparked a massive response on social media and service checker websites, with it interrupting many people's viewing of the Six Nations rugby union clash between England and Ireland, Doctor Who on BBC and the Love Island final on ITV.

Independent outage monitor Downdectorregistered thousands of issues from customers claiming they were without a TV service.

Bournemouth was listed on the site as one of the areas with the most outage reports, while there were also reports for Poole, Wimborne and Christchurch online.

One frustrated customer said: "Virgin media TV is down - during the England v Ireland rugby match! Don't they have disaster recovery where they can swap to a different broadcasting solution?"

Another added: "All channels pixelated in Parkstone, Poole. Unwatchable. When will this be resolved?"

Virgin Media's Twitter account replied to a raft of complaints online.

A Virgin Media spokesperson said: “We’re aware of an issue affecting broadcast TV services for some customers in Basildon, Croydon, Cosham, Poole and Southampton. Broadband services are unaffected. We apologise for the inconvenience caused and our teams are working  promptly to resolve the problem.”

The spokesperson later said they issue had been reseloved at around 8.30pm.