The Priority Services Register is a scheme run by energy suppliers which offers additional free services to people who are of pensionable age, are registered disabled, have a hearing or visual impairment, or have long term ill-health.
Each energy supplier has its own Priority Services Register.
If you purchase your gas and electricity from different suppliers, it is necessary to register with each one. If you switch your energy supplier, you will need to register with your new supplier.
How to sign up to the Priority Services Register
To ensure you receive additional services, you need to sign up to your supplier’s Priority Services Register. If you have a carer, they can register on your behalf. There is no charge and you can register for all or some of the services.
Services which might be available include:
- a service more tailored to your needs for example, you can ask to have your bills and meter readings in Braille, large type or audio tape
- moving your meter free of charge to make it easier for you to access
- having controls or adaptors provided to make your meter or appliances easier to use
- free quarterly meter readings if you tell your supplier you can’t read it yourself
- priority reconnection if your supply is interrupted and advance notice if they have to stop your supply
- alternative facilities for cooking and heating if your energy supply is interrupted
- additional protection from bogus callers with a password protection scheme
- arranging for your bills to be sent or copied to someone else, such as a carer, who can help you read and check them
- free advice and information about the services available because of your age, disability or chronic illness.
All suppliers should take steps once a year to inform all its customers about the Priority Services Register and how you can be listed on it.
UK Power Networks - owns and maintains electricity cables and lines across London, the South East and East of England (it does not supply energy). It has a partnership with the British Red Cross, and maintains a Priority Service Register.
The British Red Cross has been giving practical support to some of UK Power Networks’ vulnerable customers during longer, more complicated power cuts, for five years. Volunteers visit customers who have registered for extra help through the company’s Priority Services Register, often working alongside the company’s own customer advisers. They keep residents updated on how work to restore power is progressing and check whether customers need help ranging from hot drinks and torches, to a reassuring chat.
UK Power Networks advises anyone who thinks they should be on the Priority Services Register to send their details to:
Priority Services Coordinator
UK Power Networks
or telephone 0800 169 9970, leaving your name and telephone number.
Home heat helpline - 0800 33 66 99
The Home Heat Helpline advises people who are worried about paying their energy bills and keeping warm during the winter. It also gives advice to low-income households in urgent need of heating help and advice. It is free to call and is open 9.00 am - 5.30 pm Monday to Fridays.
- Telephone: 0800 33 66 99
- Website: www.homeheathelpline.org.uk
The Energy Saving Trust
The Energy Saving Trust has a searchable database of grants and schemes, along with an online home energy check to find out where you could make savings on your bills. You can also contact your local Energy Saving Trust advice centre for help:
- Telephone: 0300 123 1234 (freephone)
- Website: www.est.org.uk