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£25k upgrade to Hebden Bridge gas distribution network

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The North of England’s gas distributor, Northern Gas Networks (NGN), is investing more than £25k to upgrade the ageing gas distribution network in and around Hebden Bridge.

The major project is part of NGN’s ongoing development of infrastructure and will involve replacing around 150m of existing metal gas pipes with more durable plastic ones. This will ensure the continued, safe and reliable supply of gas to customers in the area for years to come.

The project, starting on Monday (30 April) is scheduled to last two-weeks. This has been planned in conjunction with Calderdale Council to ensure the works are carried out with as minimal disruption as possible.

To carry out our works safely and effectively, temporary two-way lights will be installed on Keighley Road, approximately outside number 68, for the duration of the works. These lights will be temporally removed on Thursday 3 May until Monday 7 May to allow for the Tour de Yorkshire.

Chris Nevison, Business Operational Leader for Northern Gas Networks, said: “We have been working closely with Calderdale Council to carefully plan these works in order to minimise any disruption to customers.

“We would like to apologise in advance for any inconvenience caused during these works, and thank our customers for their patience and support in getting them completed as quickly as possible. I’d also like to ensure cycling fans that the works will be suspended from Thursday 3 May until Monday 7 May to allow for the Tour de Yorkshire to pass through Hebden Bridge safely.”

For further information about the project please contact NGN’s Customer Care Team on 0800 040 7766 or email: customercare@northerngas.co.uk.

Anyone that smells gas or suspects carbon monoxide should call the National Gas Emergency Service immediately on 0800 111 999. This line is in operation 24-hours a day, seven days a week.

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£400k upgrade to Halifax’s gas distribution network

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The North of England’s gas distributor, Northern Gas Networks (NGN), is investing more than £400k to upgrade the ageing gas distribution network in and around Dudwell Lane in Halifax.

The major project is part of NGN’s ongoing development of infrastructure and will involve replacing around 1,100m of existing metal gas pipes with more durable plastic ones. This will ensure the continued, safe and reliable supply of gas to customers in the area for years to come.

The 17-week project, which begins on Monday (30 April), has been planned in conjunction with Calderdale Council to ensure all works are completed with as little disruption as possible. The project should be completed by Thursday 23 August.

Dudwell Lane is wide enough to support all road users at the same time as the works so there shouldn’t be too much disruption for road users. However, for the first week of the project there will be temporary two-way lights at the junction of Green Park Road and Dudwell Lane.

Chris Nevison, Business Operational Leader Northern Gas Networks, said: “We have been working closely with Calderdale Council to carefully plan these works in order to minimise any disruption to customers.

“We would like to apologise in advance for any inconvenience caused during these works, and thank our customers for their patience and support in getting them completed as quickly as possible.”

For further information about the project please contact NGN’s Customer Care Team on 0800 040 7766 or email: customercare@northerngas.co.uk.

Anyone that smells gas or suspects carbon monoxide should call the National Gas Emergency Service immediately on 0800 111 999. This line is in operation 24-hours a day, seven days a week.

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NGN and ITM Power hail compelling power-to-gas energy storage study results

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Northern Gas Networks has hailed the results of a power-to-gas feasibility study as a compelling step forward for the future of UK energy storage.

The collaborative desktop study, funded by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), was led by Sheffield-based energy and clean fuel company ITM Power, using network planning models and data from the gas distributer for the North of England.

It highlights the opportunity available to the UK to take a lead in cutting edge energy storage technology, and the potential for a new era in green gas solutions for customers.

As renewable electricity increases in the UK, effective storage and transmission of surplus power is set to become increasingly important.

Power-to-gas technology turns this excess power into hydrogen, injected into the natural gas network using it as a renewable energy store for use in heat, electricity generation or transport via hydrogen fuel cell vehicles.

Using nothing more than clean water and electricity, power is turned into zero-carbon hydrogen through an electrolyser developed by ITM Power.

A blend of natural gas and hydrogen would then help to decarbonise the heat used in UK homes and industry.

ITM Power demonstrating an electrolyser at the launch of InTEGReL, the UK’s first fully integrated energy systems research and demonstration site in Gateshead.

NGN has led gas industry research into hydrogen as an energy source and is actively pursuing its use for heating in the UK through the pioneering H21 project, focused on converting the UK gas network to 100% hydrogen.

The BEIS/ITM Power-to-Gas study examined potential deployment of large-scale storage capacity of 50 megawatts (MW) and above within the boundaries of NGN’s distribution network.

After detailed analysis of NGN’s network, accounting for seasonal variations in gas demand and the amount of hydrogen able to be produced and blended with natural gas, the study revealed a large area of the NGN grid could support power-to-gas.

Four sites were identified with the InTEGReL facility at Low Thornley, Gateshead representing the ideal location for a first-of-its kind large-scale demonstration between 50 and 100MW.

Launched in partnership with Northern Powergrid and Newcastle University, InTEGReL (Integrated Transport Electricity and Gas Research Laboratory) was opened last year as the UK’s first Whole Energy Systems research and demonstration facility, exploring the opportunity to break down traditional barriers between gas, electricity and oil.

InTEGReL is providing a unique base to test and integrate new approaches and technologies, bringing electricity, gas and transport systems closer together to create more efficient ways of storing and transporting energy as the UK moves towards a secure, low-carbon energy future delivering best value for customers.

If power-to-gas was carried out in a real-world setting, hydrogen injected at the InTEGReL site could deliver stored energy in the form of blended low carbon gas to over 243,000 domestic and industrial customers.

And its close proximity to the A1 and urban centres of Newcastle and Gateshead would provide opportunity for local export of hydrogen necessary to develop a local hydrogen refuelling station network, enabling fuel cell electric vehicles to travel from London to Aberdeen.

Recommended next steps for the project are for a Front End Engineering Design (FEED) study to examine the build of a large-scale power-to-gas demonstrator at the InTEGReL site.

Development of a UK-wide gas network industry strategy is also planned in order to agree wider power-to-gas energy storage as a near-term contribution to decarbonisation of heat, and as a means to support wider deployment of renewable generation by providing a route to a proven technology bridging the gas and electricity networks.

Mark Horsley, CEO of Northern Gas Networks said: “Power-to-gas technology has the potential to answer some of our key energy storage challenges because of the gas network’s sheer size and flexibility.

“This study has delivered some compelling results and insight into how a whole systems approach and green hydrogen can facilitate decarbonisation across all energy vectors.

“The work has shown our network is capable of power-to-gas over several sites with InTEGReL the ideal base to explore the technology, and hopefully can lead to a firm commitment for real-world power-to-gas projects in the UK in the near future.

“By bringing gas and electric together, there is an extremely valuable opportunity to drive down costs for customers, increase resilience and improve sustainability.

“NGN and ITM Power look forward to delivering a live project following the successful outcome of the recommended next steps.”

Graham Cooley, CEO of ITM Power, said: “This feasibility study has resulted in a close working relationship with Northern Gas Networks and the results are very exciting for the deployment of large scale power-to-gas energy storage on their network. Northern Gas Networks have emerged as leaders in the use of hydrogen in the UK gas network for both energy storage and for renewable heat. “

Keith Owen, Head of Systems Development and Energy Strategy at Northern Gas Networks, added: “The outcome of this feasibility study shows the exciting potential of power-to-gas energy storage on our network. Having identified four sites with potential to cost-effectively deploy 50MW of energy storage facilities we now look to practical implementation.

“A Whole Systems approach to UK energy will drive decarbonisation across the gas, electricity and mobility sectors. Power-to-gas energy storage offers a new role for the UK gas grid which places a new value on an important UK asset, delivering new market opportunities, additional options for flexibility for the UK electricity grid and ultra low carbon solutions for transport.”

To learn more about InTEGReL click here

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Three-weeks left for young artists, poets and designers to target the silent killer

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There are less than three-weeks left for young artists, poets and designers to use their talents and target the silent killer, carbon monoxide.

Northern Gas Networks (NGN), the North of England’s gas distributor, is looking for creative kids to design a poster, poem or film to raise awareness of the poisonous gas carbon monoxide (CO), often known as the ‘silent killer’ as it cannot be seen, smelled, or tasted, making it difficult to detect.

The annual competition, open until Friday 11 May, is aimed at children aged 5 to 11-years-old and there are some great prizes up for grabs for the winning pupil and their school or organisation (such as Cubs or Brownies).

First launched in 2007 the competition was previously run by charity CO-Gas Safety in partnership with the gas distribution network (GDN) companies but this year the GDNs, including NGN, have taken over the running of the competition.

Regional winners will go through to the final that will be judged at a presentation at the Palace of Westminster. Entrants stand a chance of winning the following prizes:

  • Regional winner: £150 each and £300 for their school/organisation
  • National winner: £300 for themselves and £600 for their school/organisation*

Entries can be emailed to: tbell@northerngas.co.uk (closing date Friday 11 May)

Tom Bell, Head of Social Strategy at Northern Gas Networks, said: “We take the safety of customers very seriously, so it’s a pleasure to be involved in spreading such a vitally important message about the danger of CO.

“This toxic gas can be deadly, so engaging children through art is a great way to raise awareness and hopefully educate their families too. It’s a fantastic opportunity for them to have some fun, exercise their creative talents and have a chance of winning some great prizes while relaying an important safety message.”

For more information about the competition, or to see the terms and conditions, please visit: www.energynetworks.org/gas/she/co-safety-competition.html

CO is produced by the incomplete burning of fossil fuels and can be emitted by faulty boilers or gas appliances. Symptoms of CO poisoning include dizziness, nausea and shortness of breath, with around 50 UK deaths recorded every year. For further information about the dangers of carbon monoxide, visit: www.northerngasnetworks.co.uk/carbon-monoxide.

Anyone that smells gas or suspects carbon monoxide should call the National Gas Emergency Service immediately on 0800 111 999. This line is in operation 24-hours a day, seven days a week.

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Email and payment system unavailable this weekend (Saturday 14 April and Sunday 15 April)

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Unfortunately, our email and online payment services are unavailable this weekend (Saturday 14 and Sunday 15 April) while we carry out an upgrade. We’re sorry for any inconvenience caused. We’ll be back up and running again on Monday 16 April.

If you need to get in touch during this time, please complete our get in touch form below or contact us via Facebook or Twitter and we’ll be happy to help.

Alternatively, if your query is urgent please call us on 0800 040 7766.

Anyone that smells gas or suspects carbon monoxide should call the National Gas Emergency Service immediately on 0800 111 999. This line is in operation 24-hours a day, seven days a week.

Get in touch

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Essential upgrade to gas distribution network on Buttermere, Maryport

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From Monday (9 April), the North of England’s gas distributor, Northern Gas Networks (NGN), will be  upgrading the gas distribution network on Buttermere, Maryport.

The project is part of NGN’s ongoing investment in the gas infrastructure in the area and involves replacing approximately 550m of existing metal gas pipes with more durable plastic ones.

The ageing metal gas main has required several repairs in recent years and NGN has prioritised the pipe for replacement to minimise any inconvenience caused by future repairs and ensure the continue safe and reliable supply of gas for years to come.

The six-week project has been carefully planned in conjunction with Allerdale Borough Council to minimise the impact caused. Shops and businesses in the area will remain open as usual.

NGN’s Customer Care Officers will be door-knocking local homes and businesses to make customers aware of the project, while on-site signage will advise motorists of the work taking place. Regular updates will also be available on NGN’s website northerngasnetworks.co.uk, Twitter @NGNgas and Facebook @northerngasnetworks.

Matty McBride, Business Operational Leader for Northern Gas Networks in Cumbria said: “We have been working closely with Allerdale Borough Council to carefully plan these works and will be doing all we can to minimise disruption to customers.

“We’d like to apologise for any inconvenience caused and thank everyone for their support as we work to complete this project as safely and quickly as possible.”

Once the project in Buttermere is complete work will commence on Moorside Road and Ewanrigg Road.  NGN will provide further information as soon as it is available.

For further information about the project please contact NGN’s Customer Care Team on 0800 040 7766 or email: customercare@northerngas.co.uk.

Anyone that smells gas or suspects carbon monoxide should call the National Gas Emergency Service immediately on 0800 111 999. This line is in operation 24-hours a day, seven days a week.

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Northern Gas Networks and Bradford Council thank Silsden for tremendous community spirit during loss of gas supply

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Northern Gas Networks (NGN) and Bradford Council are thanking the people of Silsden for their resilience and community spirit during the recent loss of gas supply to their town.

The gas supply to over 3,500 properties in Silsden was cut off on the morning of Friday, 30 March, when a third party building contractor damaged a gas main in the area.

A massive operation then ensued, led by the North of England’s gas distribution network, Northern Gas Networks, to keep the community safe and warm, and to get everyone connected back up to the gas network as quickly as possible. Around 8,000 customers were affected.

St James Church was one of the first on hand to assist, with Rev David Griffiths allowing Northern Gas Networks to use the church hall as a customer drop-in centre throughout the long weekend and Silsden AFC becoming the base for strategic operations.

With an army of Northern Gas Networks engineers working to get people back on gas, supported by hundreds of office-based colleagues from throughout the business, and bolstered by engineers from gas networks nationwide, Bradford Council worked with the team to help coordinate the local effort. The council also opened up Keighley Leisure Centre’s shower facilities for all those affected by the loss of gas.

Emergency equipment was swiftly provided by Northern Gas Networks, including electric heaters and hot plates for cooking. Northern Gas Networks also provided food vouchers for all residents and drafted in mobile food vans to make sure no one was left without a hot meal.

With thousands of people affected, it was critical to make sure that vulnerable people were not left cold or without information. Northern Gas Networks kept customers updated by sharing information on its website and social media channels but in order to contact residents who weren’t online a callout out was made for volunteers in the local community. More than 50 people turned up on the Saturday morning to help colleagues from Northern Gas Networks to distribute letters. Residents gamely went around visiting neighbours and sharing information. The support of the local community was invaluable.

Local Facebook group Silsden Buzz was alight with posts and comments about the situation, with volunteers sharing information from Northern Gas Networks, the church hall and Bradford Council and a special group ‘NGN Silsden Says Thank You’ was set up by Silsden Buzz – https://www.facebook.com/groups/163662744349271/about/

Many local businesses also provided support, from Steeton Hall Hotel’s offer of hot showers, to a large consignment of food from Ilkley Tesco, organised by a resident who works in the store.

Local people themselves showed an astonishing level of buoyancy throughout, welcoming the gas engineers into their homes, and jubilantly announcing on social media the locations of the gas reconnections as they progressed from street to street.

Bradford Council strategic director Michael Jameson was leading the council’s support during the incident. He said: “The community spirit we have witnessed in Silsden during the loss of gas supply has been absolutely amazing. Despite the significant inconvenience to their daily lives, people have rallied round, looked out for their vulnerable family, friends and neighbours, and kept cheerful and supportive of the operation. Thank you to all of Silsden for your optimism and patience.

“Local businesses and organisations, and of course St James Church and Silsden Sports Club, have been fantastic, providing local people with amenities, comfort, food and support. The presence of the British Red Cross has also been invaluable. At a time when temperatures reached below freezing, it was extremely reassuring to have this additional support for residents’ wellbeing, which included care for vulnerable people in their own homes.

“Finally we cannot thank Northern Gas Networks enough for their highly professional response to the situation. The level of gratitude and praise they have received from the people of Silsden is testament to their wholehearted approach to resolving the situation promptly and fully.”

Mark Horsley, Chief Executive at Northern Gas Networks, said: “We would like to thank everyone involved over this Easter weekend for their fantastic support and patience. Thankfully incidents like this are extremely rare, however, when they do happen to have the support of the community that we saw in Silsden makes a huge difference. The way residents pulled together to help each other really shows the strength of spirit throughout Silsden.

“We would like to thank West Yorkshire Police, West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service, Bradford Council, Northern Powergrid, Wales & West Utilities, Cadent, SGN, local volunteers, St James Church, Silsden Town Hall and Library, Silsden Buzz, Silsden AFC, the British Red Cross, Norwood House Nursing home, the local community and everybody else who supported us in resolving the loss of supply as safely and quickly as possible.”

The first homes were reconnected to the gas supply on Saturday, 31 March, just a day after the damage occurred. By Tuesday, 3 April gas supplies had been restored to more than 3,200 properties in Silsden, with just a few left to reconnect where access was not yet available.

Anyone that smells gas or suspects carbon monoxide should call the National Gas Emergency Service immediately on 0800 111 999. This line is in operation 24-hours a day, seven days a week.

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NGN joins ENA to launch energy network Innovation Strategies

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Northern Gas Networks joined the Energy Networks Association (ENA) this week to launch the Gas and Electricity Network Innovation Strategies, the latest chapter in Great Britain’s energy network innovation success story.

Since 2004, over 1,300 innovation projects have been delivered across both gas and electricity networks, allowing network operators to better understand how to integrate new energy technologies such as electric vehicles, renewable distributed generation and decarbonised sources of gas into our energy system.

The projects reflect the purpose of Britain’s energy network companies in building an efficient, smarter, cleaner energy system fit for Britain’s homes and businesses. Independent research carried out by Pöyry has shown that existing innovation projects used by electricity network operators alone could deliver up to £1.7bn of benefits by 2031.

Driven by decarbonisation, digitisation and decentralisation, these projects are already helping energy network operators identify new ways of better serving their customers by helping them develop quicker, more efficient and cheaper ways to deliver a cleaner energy system.

NGN launched innovation project InTEGReL (Integrated Transport Electricity Gas Research Laboratory), the UK’s first fully integrated energy systems research and demonstration site, in September.

The publication of the Gas Network Innovation Strategy will set out new areas of focus where companies can provide continuing benefits to customers from innovation projects, as well as how they will share the lessons learnt from those projects with other organisations to roll out the benefits more widely and better shape future innovation.

This transparency is key to ensuring that network companies respond to customer needs and continue to focus on priority areas for innovation, which can deliver most benefit to the wider energy system in the most effective way possible.

Each strategy provides a detailed roadmap, detailing priority areas and how future energy innovation will evolve to meet the predicted challenges.

The Gas Networks Innovation Strategy sets out the role that the existing gas infrastructure can play in meeting demand for power, heat and transport in a low carbon economy. It sets out an approach based on seven themes: the future of gas; safety and emergency; reliability and maintenance; repair; distribution mains replacement; environment and low carbon; and security.

ENA Chief Executive, David Smith states: “Decarbonisation, digitisation and decentralisation are driving revolution in the energy sector, and our energy networks are on the frontline of delivering the kind of world-leading innovation that is making that happen.

“The publication of the first joint Network Innovation Strategies is a major milestone and we look forward to working with our innovation partners to ensure our network infrastructure, our wider energy system and our customers benefit from new technology, business models and unique opportunities.”

Huw Sullivan, Chair of the ENA Gas Innovation & Governance Group said: “Since funding for network innovation was first introduced, Great Britain’s energy networks have developed a world leading reputation for innovation and these strategies build on the impressive track record of energy networks in delivering innovation projects.

“Projects have the potential to develop a truly world-leading Whole Systems Approach that brings the way our gas and electricity networks work more closely together. This will be crucial as we find new ways to meet the UK’s carbon budgets, because if our power, heat, transport and waste sectors are all interdependent, then so must be the solutions to their decarbonisation.”

To read the Gas Network Strategy click here

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Silsden Compensation Payments

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How to claim compensation

Thank you for your patience following the incident in Silsden. If you’re returning home from an Easter break and are still without gas please get in touch on 0800 040 7766 and we’ll get your supply back on.

Guaranteed standards payment

At NGN we are governed by a number of regulatory standards. When these standards aren’t met we offer payments to homeowners and businesses, as your gas supply was interrupted you will be entitled to compensation payment under Guaranteed Standard 1. You can read further details about the Guaranteed Standards here: www.northerngasnetworks.co.uk/get-in-touch/

This payment will be made through your gas supplier and will appear on your energy bill. It is calculated automatically but please be patient as it may take six to eight weeks for this payment to be made via your supplier.

As looking after our customers is always a priority to us we pay double the regulatory standard payment to all affected customers.

You do not need to contact us to progress this payment but if you have any queries you can contact our Customer Care Team on 0800 040 7766 or email customercare@northerngas.co.uk.

Loss of business compensation for business owners

If your business has lost money as a result of the damage caused to the gas network over the Easter weekend, you may be entitled to make a loss of business claim.

This will be dealt with by Athena UK Ltd., the Principal Contractor which severed our gas pipe while carrying out work on the Barratt Developments PLC site.

Athena and their insurers will be addressing specific costs where local people and businesses have suffered losses as a result of the accident.

Anyone who would like to investigate making a claim should email claims@vistainsurance.co.uk including reference number 10187245 in the subject line.

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Our Gender Pay Report

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At NGN we are absolutely committed to building a diverse and inclusive workforce where colleagues feel that they can make the most of their potential regardless of their age, disability, sexuality, background or gender. To find out more read the full Gender Pay Report.

We have clear and evaluated role profiles and a well-established pay mechanism, so what a colleague earns is based on the work they do and is in no way affected by their gender.

The gender pay gap is the percentage difference between average hourly earnings for men and women. Our gender pay gap is 14.55%, which is below the national mean gender pay gap of 18.1% (of those companies that have already published their data). Our median pay gap is 16.2%.

But why is there a gap at all? This is largely due to the proportion of males and females in our workforce – which is 80% male and we also have more males in more senior roles overall.

We know that there’s a shortage of female students progressing into STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) subjects at school and into careers which then follow, and this is true in our organisation too where we have fewer women in professional engineering and STEM roles at all levels. However, it’s pleasing to see that in the top quartile of pay at NGN, women represent 20% of colleagues.

Although our industry is traditionally perceived as a male dominated one, we are taking a range of actions to try and close the gender gap. Much work is being done through school engagement to attract more women into our organisation, including careers events, employer workshops and careers advice. We also have generous family friendly policies including paid keeping in touch days, six months full maternity pay, and a flexible working policy to encourage more women to join NGN and stay with us.

We are committed to making sure that all colleagues meet their potential and continue to make Northern Gas Networks a great place to work.

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