Tuesday, 7 December 2021


As power is slowly returned to communities, it is only right that questions around compensation start to be asked.

I have spent today meeting the Northumberland Local Resilience Forum, visiting homes, and in multiple meetings to progress reconnections. I want to say a massive thank you to all the engineers reconnecting power – it has been cold, wet, very windy and we have light snow.

One constituent was in tears when his interim generator turned up. At the start of today, there were over 300 houses still without power, though this number is being reduced as I write.

I’m getting updated information constantly about the progress of reconnections. Where interim generators are needed, we are helping to sort these.

BEIS and Ofgem have already confirmed they will be conducting a full review to see why the power has been off for such a long period of time.

I continue to meet with Northern Powergrid regularly to push them on this matter. I welcomed their commitment to reimbursing expenses for food and accommodation if they didn’t have power. However, many families have spent a large amount of their monthly budget in a matter of days to cover the huge costs faced. Statutory compensation and additional expenses must be paid as soon as possible, and I certainly want to see at least some compensation paid to affected customers before Christmas.


Statutory Compensation
You will receive £70 for the first 48 hours of the power outage, plus an additional £140 for each additional day. This compensation was previously limited to £700, but the government have announced that Ofgem have removed this cap.
You should contact Northern Powergrid to claim this compensation within 3 months of the supply being fixed. This means that claims should be made by early March at the latest.

Additional Compensation
Northern Powergrid have confirmed to me that they will provide additional financial assistance to any domestic customer still off supply from 29th November

This includes the reasonable cost of alternative accommodation, and food for up to £15 per person, per meal, and other reasonably incurred costs, for example, where a customer has arranged their own back-up generator.
You should keep receipts for this. However, I have urged Northern Powergrid to be flexible when it comes to this, particularly around the start of the outages.


Northern Powergrid have asked their customers to submit receipts and expenses via: StormArwen@northernpowergrid.com.
I have received a commitment from Northern Powergrid that they will write to all customers explaining the compensation they are entitled to. These letters will go out soon, but I will continue to fight for families in financial hardship at this very difficult time.

This has been a really tough time for everyone affected. It is unacceptable that people have been without power for so long, and questions need to be asked.

If you have an ongoing outage, occur please call 105, or email the assistance email stormarwen@northernpowergrid.com. Although Northern Powergrid’s Communications were previously woeful, it is better now, and they are the specialist electrical engineers. My team and I are also here to help and we will not stop until everyone is fully reconnected and compensated. If you or someone you know is vulnerable or has an urgent issue, please contact me on 01434 239 205, or on guy.opperman@parliament.uk.