Northern Powergrid

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Working on or near our assets

“We're here to provide you with the help and advice you need when working near our assets. Our guidance is designed to be simple and user friendly to support you in which ever service you require from us." 
Andy Bilclough, Director of Field Operations

There are times when people need our help to work near or around our assets when undertaking their own projects. This ranges from individuals working on their homes to companies making big investments in new infrastructure.

Typically these situations include requests:

  • for physical covers for overhead lines (shrouding)
  • to physically move our assets (either temporarily or permanently)
  • to share one of our wood poles (e.g. for a telephone line)
  • for safety advice about working near our assets, including where our underground cables are
  • to temporarily switch off the power while work is undertaken near our assets.


When providing help and advice on work taking place near our assets we aim to always provide our customers with a 10/10 experience, putting safety first and meeting all of our statutory duties.

Our performance

We have invested heavily in improving our customer service, through investment in our digital channels and great personalised support for customers who need to work near our assets.

As a result our customer satisfaction scores have continued to increase.  The chart below shows our average customer satisfaction scores in 2020 for our major service lines.

Our scores well exceed the Ofgem minimum target of 8.2/10 however, our focus is on continually improving our customer satisfaction and offering our customers choice in how they contact us.

Our focus in 2020 has been on listening and acting on our customer feedback, with improvements implemented being focussed on improving communications, reducing lead times through close working with our contractors and enhancing our digital services.

Improving our service

Our customer satisfaction has gone from strength to strength by really listening to what our customers are asking of us and developing our service to offer personalised support where required.

In 2020 we developed an improved journey for our disconnection customers, working closely with our contractors to reduce lead times and enabling our customers to pay on-line and book a survey and delivery date immediate providing them with peace of mind on the next stages of their work requirement.

We have also further developed our on-line cable plan request system to expand the capability and enable more customer to obtain a plan on line first time.  We do however, recognise we have some work to do in this area and will focus in 2021 on reducing customer wait times on-line through further investment in our technology.

How our customers scored us (out of 10)

Working near assets-customer scores.png

Looking ahead

We are looking at future developments in this area including free installation of earthing to domestic customers along with the ability to book appointments online. We are also pursuing improvements in our communications leading up to an appointment and after completion of the works, further tightening of lead-times for key services and implementation of standard pricing and web-based disconnection services.