Information for Customers
You have a choice.
You have a choice on who delivers your new or modified connection scheme and who owns the constructed network. We can provide you with a complete connection service but you may also ask an Independent Connection Provider (ICP) or undertake some of the works and/or an Independent Network Operator (IDNO) to own the new network. More information on the role of ICPs and IDNOs is provided below.
Further information regarding how the competition in connections process works can be found in our leaflet here.
Ready to apply? Click here.
What is an Independent Connection Provider (ICP)?
An ICP is a company that can build electricity networks to agreed standards and quality for adoption by WPD or an IDNO. The ICP must be registered with Lloyds Register EMEA under the National Electricity Registration Scheme (NERS) and hold the relevant scopes for the works to be undertaken.
Where can I find an ICP?
What work can be done by an ICP?
Connections works are split into contestable and non-contestable works. Contestable works can be carried out by WPD, an ICP or an IDNO. An ICP can undertake contestable works activities but cannot undertake the non-contestable works. A table of contestable and non-contestable activities can be found at the bottom of this page.
Click here for details of the operational activities that an ICP is permitted to undertake on the WPD network.
What is an Independent Network Operator (IDNO)?
An IDNO is a company licensed by Ofgem to own and operate electricity networks. They will be responsible for all future operation, maintenance and fault repairs on the network that they own. In some instances IDNOs may choose to construct their own networks.
Where a new connection and new network is built by an ICP it may be adopted by an IDNO. In this case, the end customers connected to this new network will be customers of the IDNO rather than WPD.
Where can I find an IDNO?
A list of IDNO's can be found here.
Contestable works are the elements of the connections work which can be undertaken by an ICP or IDNO rather than WPD. Non-contestable works are the elements of the connections work which must be completed by WPD or our appointed agents.
A list of activities can be found in our connection charging methodologies. Click here to view the methodology documents for each region.
The following table summarises elements of the work that are either Non-Contestable (can only be undertaken by WPD) or Contestable (may be undertaken by WPD, an ICP or an IDNO):
ICP WPD Trial Determine point of connection to distribution system No Yes Yes Design of extension assets; Yes Yes Yes Design upstream reinforcement works associated with new connections No Yes Design diversionary works associated with new connections Yes Yes Design approval No No Yes* Plant and materials specifications No Yes Procure materials for own works Yes Yes Yes Land rights negotiations with third party landowners Yes Yes Yes Produce wayleave/easement documentation and enter into agreements with third party landowners No Yes Trench excavation and duct installation - on site Yes Yes Yes Trench excavation and duct installation - on public highway Yes Yes Yes Construction of substation buildings and other civil works - on site Yes Yes Yes Cable laying for own works Yes Yes Yes Substation plant installation for own works Yes Yes Yes Excavation for jointing bay - on site Yes Yes Yes Excavation for own works jointing bay - public highway Yes Yes Yes Jointing (dead) of cables within extension assets Yes Yes Yes Connection of Contestable works (live) to the distribution system. For the avoidance of doubt this applies to LV works only Yes Yes Yes Connection of Contestable works to the distribution system at HV No Yes Yes Connection of Contestable works to the distribution system at EHV No Yes No Excavation for joints to connect Contestable works to distribution system (closing joints) Yes Yes Yes Live LV jointing on newly adopted new extension assets1 Yes Yes Yes Reinforcement/diversionary work on the existing distribution system No2 Yes Quality assurance inspections No Yes Yes** Testing of extension assets installed by ICP Yes Yes Yes Commissioning and connection of extension assets to the distribution system No Yes Yes Recording of installed assets Yes3 Yes Yes Operations, repairs and maintenance No Yes No HV Operations No Yes Yes*** Removing disconnected LV mains, HV and EHV Overhead conductors and poles No Yes No Removing disconnected Pole and Ground type substations No Yes No
1Live LV jointing may be carried out by a suitable accredited ICP subject to our prior agreement.
2Sole funded reinforcement and diversionary works associated with the new connection carried out independently of the existing distribution system will be treated as Contestable work.
3Only for Contestable works installed by the ICP.
*For LV and HV demand.
**Subject to specific criteria being met.
***Subject to the provision and acceptance of the ICP's Safety Management System.