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Saturday 24 October 2015

Council supports increased powers to Energy Ombudsman


Cheshire East Council is backing the recent announcement of increased powers to the Energy Ombudsman.

The powers will strengthen the Energy Ombudsmen’s role to help customers who are being treated badly identify and to address systemic industry-wide problems.

Cheshire East Council partnered with OVO Energy earlier this year when they launched Fairerpower to Cheshire East residents. One of the key aims is to ensure residents have access to excellent customer service and low tariffs.

Fairerpower partner OVO Energy has been given a five-star customer service rating by consumer watchdog Which?.

Which? rates 22 UK gas and electricity suppliers after the biggest publicly-available survey of its kind. It gathered opinions from more than 9,000 energy customers and rated energy suppliers on a range of measures, including customer service, value for money and accuracy of bills.

Each energy supplier receives a customer score based on their overall satisfaction and the likelihood they would recommend it to a friend.

OVO are fourth out of 22 and only four per cent behind the overall leader.

The three companies above OVO are all much smaller, with significantly fewer customers and much higher tariffs than OVO and Fairerpower.

Councillor Rod Menlove, board member for Fairerpower, said: “I welcome these extra powers for the regulators. We are really proud of how Fairerpower and OVO are shaking up the energy market in Cheshire East.

“This Council does not believe people should be forced to choose between heating and eating. So far, 60 per cent of Fairerpower’s customers have never switched before, so you can’t say fairer than that.”

Fairerpower pay monthly customers get:

● Potential average savings of £258 a year (see note 1);

● Ability to fix contracts for 12 months

● No exit fees; leave at any time

● Three per cent interest reward paid on all credit balances up to £1,000 (see note 3);and

● Award-winning customer service

Fairerpower pay-as-you-go (PAYG) customers get:

● Potential average savings of £75 a year (see note 2);

● Free energy monitor that shows credit and usage;

● Smart meter as standard; and

● Award-winning customer service.

Cheshire East Council is also in discussions with housing associations to extend the benefits of fairer, competitively priced energy to even more residents.

OVO also topped 10 of the 12 award categories at the 2014 uSwitch Energy Awards, including value for money and customer service.

They also topped the 2014 Money Saving Expert poll for customer service, with 82 per cent of customers giving OVO a ‘great’ rating.

To see how much you could save go to or call 0800 408 6701 (Pay monthly) or 0800 408 6705 (PAYG)

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