Consultation launched on the future of services for gas consumers throughout Wales and south west England
Wales & West Utilities, the company who look after the pipes that bring gas to homes and businesses, are urging its customers to have their say on the future of the gas network that serves 7.5 million people across Wales and south west England.
The company provide the national gas emergency service for Wales and south west England and invest £2 million a week looking after the gas network. They also connect around 11,000 homes and businesses to the network each year. And for customers in need of extra support, the company has a scheme offering low cost gas connections and financial help for appliance repairs. There is also a priority register to make sure people in vulnerable situations are prioritised when things go wrong.
Wales & West Utilities charge for their services through consumer gas bills. Currently their services make up 20% of an annual gas bill – so for the average gas bill of £630 that’s £128 a year – or 35 pence per day.
It is asking customers to give their views on the gas emergency service, investment to keep the gas network safe and reliable and how it supports those most in need. It is also seeking views on preparing the gas network for a greener future, making sure it can continue to deliver essential services for generations to come.
The consultation is easily accessible at www.pipeuponline.co.ukand through Facebook at www.m.me/wwutilities. The company is also running TV adverts for the first time, and will be touring Wales and the south west of England throughout the summer with a series of community events.
Wales & West Utilities Chief Executive, Graham Edwards, said:
“You’d be forgiven for not knowing much about us – the pipes we look after are mostly underground and out of mind. But we provide an essential service, keeping people safe and warm in their homes and powering businesses. So whilst you may not know who we are, we like to think we’re already closely connected. And through our consultation, we’d like to get closer – finding out what really matters to you.
“We want our customer’s views on getting the balance right between investing to maintain and improve our services and prepare the gas network for the future, while keeping bills low.
We understand the financial pressure households are under and we remain committed to keeping our portion of the gas bill to a minimum – we have already reduced the cost of our services since 2013 from £145 to £128 today.
“We’re looking forward to hearing customer feedback. Your views will play a vital role in shaping our business for the future.”