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Your Plan

Preparing for the future

You may not have heard about us, but we’re already closely connected. We’re the people that look after the pipes that keep the gas flowing to heat homes and power businesses across Wales and south west England, helping keep you safe and warm at home.

Our next business plan sets out how we’re going to deliver the services that you rely on in the future. 

This is the plan we’re writing together

Since 2018, more than 25,000 of you have helped to help write this plan, letting us know what you think about the future of your gas network and the services we provide.

After listening to what you've told us we've summarised your feedback into four areas. Then we've taken what you've asked us to and developed a series of commitments, setting out what we'll deliver between 2021-2026. You can find out more information below.

We still want to hear your views. 

Have your Say

Meeting the needs of consumers and network users
Maintain our industry leading customer service levels

We promise to deliver a high quality and inclusive service.

  1. To continue to test ourselves against challenging accreditation and independent standards so you know our service is the best it can be. 
  2. We’ll consistently resolve over 85% of complaints in 1 day 
  3. Delivering outstanding service will continue to be a fundamental part of our culture – part of colleague induction, training and coaching. 
  4. As your expectations and technology evolve, the way you can communicate and engage with us will too. But our commitment to outstanding, inclusive and accessible service will remain. 
We’re proud to be the only gas network to receive the prestigious Institute of Customer Servicemark with distinction, and were the first gas network to receive whole business accreditation against the rigorous BS18477 for the support we offer to the most vulnerable. 
Continue to lead the way in promoting the Priority Service Register (PSR)

We promise to continue to increase the number of people on the PSR and work with other utilities to support the most vulnerable.

  1. We’ll work with partners and carer networks to increase the number of PSR sign ups by 200% to 12,000 a year.
  2. To continue to work with others to put in place data sharing agreements for water, gas and electricity sectors so we can all support those who need it most efficiently.  
Every gas, water and electricity supplier – the companies you pay your bills to, and your electricity distribution network, has a PSR. This register helps us and other utilities to make sure we really look after those who need it most.
Increase the support we offer for the most vulnerable

We promise to lift more families out of fuel poverty and safeguard against CO.

  1. To work with partners to help more than 1000 homes in fuel poverty each year by making sure they’re on the right energy tariff, maximising their income and supporting energy efficiency. 
  2. To continue to raise awareness of the danger of carbon monoxide, visiting 50 schools a year and focussing on the most vulnerable. 
  3. We’ll increase the number of Locking Cooker Valves fitted, helping people live independently for longer.
Reduce the theft of gas to keep people safe and bills fair

We promise to proactively manage theft of gas 

  1. We’ll use industry data and our resources to tackle this problem proactively – keeping people safe and making sure bills are fair. 
  2. We’ll support the most vulnerable to register with a gas supplier
Evolve our Critical Friends Panel and create a new Citizens Panel

We promise to make sure that voices from across our region are listened to through a ‘centrally facilitated, locally delivered’ approach to enhanced engagement 

  1. We’ll hold more stakeholder events.
  2. Our new Citizens Panel will be made up of participants from across our region and we’ll make sure the voices of minority groups are well represented.
Delivering an environmentally sustainable network
Reduce the carbon emissions from our operations

We promise to further reduce our environmental impact 

  1. Upgrade 400km of old gas pipes and 20,000 gas services a year – not only keeping the gas flowing safely but reducing carbon emissions by the equivalent of taking 46,000 cars off the road
  2. Make sure 75% of our company cars are hybrid or ultra-low emission vehicles while exploring green alternatives for our commercial fleet and reducing mileage, also supporting biodiversity and the improvement of air quality.
Focus on sustainability and consider regional factors

We promise to become an even more sustainable network

  1. Align our priorities  to the relevant UN Sustainable Development Goals.
  2. Clean up, manage or monitor 69 historic gas work sites to keep their impact on local communities and the environment to a minimum. 
  3. Reuse and recycle at least 80% of our waste by 2026 to achieve our ambition to be a zero-waste company by 2050
Deliver a Net Zero ready network by 2035

We promise to collaborate to deliver a low carbon, reliable and affordable source of energy in the future 

  1. Work with other gas and electricity networks to help design a ‘whole system’ energy future that decarbonises heat, transport and electricity.
  2. Be part of a ‘national conversation’ on the future of heat, helping energy consumers understand the need for change and the options available.
  3. Use smarter technology to enable more green gas connections – reducing costs for producers.
  4. Work in partnership with others to promote connecting green gas production to the gas network.
  5. Work to facilitate the conversion of large cities to zero carbon hydrogen.
Carry on innovating and working with others to decarbonise

We promise to lead the way in delivering an affordable, reliable and sustainable future for energy

  1. Continue to explore the options for decarbonisation from a customer’s point of view, making sure that any solution is not only affordable but also keeps disruption to a minimum
  2. Play our part in decarbonising electricity by continuing to connect peaking power stations to our network, supporting renewable energy.
  3. Work with other gas and electricity networks to help design a ‘whole system’ energy future that decarbonises heat, transport and electricity
  4. Be part of a ‘national conversation’ on the future of heat, helping energy consumers understand the need for change and the options available. 
Maintaining a safe and resilient network by continuing to upgrade the gas network
Keep gas supplies safe

We promise to invest to make sure your gas supply continues to be safe

  1. Investing £450m to upgrade 400km of old gas pipes every year between 2021-2025, and upgrade the individual supply pipes to 20,000 homes a year to keep you and your family safe for generations to come
  2. Use data to target investment in our pipes and equipment, maintaining them as cost effectively as possible.  
  3. And in the event of a gas emergency, an engineer will be with you within an hour to make things safe.
Make sure gas supplies continue to be reliable, particularly for the most vulnerable

We promise to keep the gas flowing reliably for years to come

  1. Investing £450m to upgrade 400km of old gas pipes every year between 2021-2025, making sure that unplanned interruptions to your gas supply is a once in a lifetime occurrence 
  2. In the unlikely event of an unplanned interruption to your supply, we’ll resolve the problem and turn it back on in less than 10 hours on average. If your gas is off for more than 12 hours, we'll voluntarily compensate you with £25 and pay enhanced compensation for every 24 hour period you are off gas. 
  3. Focus on detecting and preventing cyber-attacks, and maintain the security and integrity of our systems. 

     

Prepare our team to face future challenges

We promise to make sure our team is resilient and is ready to deliver what you want and need. 

  1. Make sure we have all the skills we need for the future through high quality apprenticeships and upskilling and multi-skilling colleague.
  2. Retain skilled colleagues by making Wales & West Utilities somewhere people want to work: a flexible, values driven organisation that recognises the importance of a work-life balance, wellbeing and development opportunities. 
  3. Improve the diversity of our team so we reflect the communities we serve.
Delivering value for money
Keep our contribution to gas bills as low as possible while delivering a safe and reliable supply of gas

We promise to deliver what you want and need, while keeping our costs as low as we possibly can

  1. For the gas emergency service, maintaining the existing gas network and upgrading old gas pipes, while delivering outstanding levels of customer service we expect our element of your bill to remain at £133 (2018/19 prices) – or 36p a day.
Continue to reduce our costs without impacting levels of service to customers

We promise to make sure you receive a value for money service.

  1.  We’ll save 0.5% a year against our budget right across our organisation. This will be returned to you through your gas supplier
Invest for today and to meet future challenges – but don’t spend more than necessary

We promise to spend your money wisely, based on what gives best value every time.

  1. The money we’ll spend between 2021-2026 will not only keep the gas flowing safely and reliably today, it will also prepare the gas network for the future
Focus our innovation on benefiting customers today and to prepare the gas network for the future

We promise to continue to collaborate and innovate.

  1. We’ll work with over 500 organisations, including SMEs and academia to address the challenges we face.
  2. Using data in new ways will help us identify and support the most vulnerable in the communities we serve
  3. Innovation will design new tools, equipment and processes make our work more efficient and less disruptive to customers and communities today
  4. Our research will explore the options for decarbonisation from a customer’s point of view, making sure that any solution is not only affordable but also keeps disruption to a minimum