Finally, after a week of Internet misery and frustration, I'm properly back on line. The engineer (nice bloke though he was) never found out what the problem was but, having replaced most of the wire between my computer and the local telephone exchange, all seems to be well.
Meanwhile, I've nearly completed my Candy Santa model. All things being equal it'll be ready in the next couple of days. I'll need to stock up on M&M again. #1 Son seems to have eaten them all!
Ho ho ho.