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Issue Date:- 7 April 2008

Gas Mains Renewal Work Planned for Manchester

NATIONAL Grid, the UK’s largest utility company, is planning to replace over 700 metres of medium pressure gas mains in the Bootle area of Sefton as part of a multi-million pound package of improvements to the North West’s gas supply network.

The work will see existing metallic mains replaced with modern plastic ones. If left undisturbed once in the ground, the new pipes will have a lifespan of around 80 years.

The work to renew the gas mains is part of a national project agreed with the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) for replacing metallic mains across Britain. In all, the programme will see National Grid renew 15,000km of gas pipe over an eight year period.

The North West Gas Alliance – an alliance partnership between National Grid and Balfour Beatty will carry out 508km of mains replacement. Other contractors and National Grid’s own workforce will carry out the remainder.

Works in Sefton get underway on 7 April 2008 and will take approximately 10 weeks to complete.

During this period, mains will be replaced in Fleetwoods Lane and Glovers Lane. Work in each location will take several weeks to complete and residents will be notified by letter before work commences.

National Grid has worked with the local authority and the emergency services to manage traffic flows around the project.

John Edwards, Manager of the North West Gas Alliance said:- “We need to renew these gas mains so that local people can continue to take their gas supplies for granted.  We hope that people will have patience with us while we carry out this essential work – there will be disruption in the short term, but the end result will be a safe and reliable gas supply.”


"2 years ago, with my husband, I managed to go to every Status Quo concert on the UK winter tour, a total of 31 concerts in 6 weeks. I met so many people that had stories to tell about their experiences of seeing Status Quo. As a result I am compiling a book of people’s memories for a book entitled:- ‘Goin’ Quoin’ Past and Present’.  I am interested in hearing from anyone who has seen Status Quo from the 1960’s right up to the present day. As the band have been performing for more that 40 years now this would be an ideal opportunity to record all those memories.  All the proceeds from the book are going to The Shona Smile Foundation (   I would be very grateful for any contribution readers could send me an email."  Yvonne Hanvey


DESPITE the warmer weather, people are being reminded to pick up a hot offer this spring and apply for energy efficiency grants which could help cut fuel bills.  Under the government-funded Warm Front Scheme, which is funded by the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, householders across England could be eligible for a grant of up to £2700 to help pay for energy saving improvements to their home.

The improvements on offer, which can include a combination of draft proofing, cavity wall insulation, loft insulation and gas, oil and electric heating systems, can help save the average home as much as £200 a year through being more energy efficient.  This could be good news for many low income families and older people who are feeling the pinch of energy price rises, which have seen the average fuel bill climb to over £1000 a year.

Since 2003 domestic gas charges have increased by up to 90% and charges for electricity by 63%.  As a consequence, it is now estimated that over 4 million people in this country are living in fuel poverty and are spending over 10% of their income on trying to keep warm.  Recent double-digit price rises from npower, Scottish and Southern, EDF Energy, British Gas, ScottishPower and E.On have forced half a million households into fuel poverty this year alone.

Green support services company eaga, who manage the Warm Front Scheme, which forms the cornerstone of the Government’s commitment to tackle cold homes and reduce fuel poverty in England by 2010, are urging householders to make their homes more environmentally and energy efficient to help offset rising fuel prices.  They have reported that over 1.6 million homes in the last eight years have benefited from a Warm Front Grant to help make their home more energy efficient. However, many more homes could be eligible and are being reminded that spring is the best time to apply.

Paul Varley, Director at eaga plc said:- “At this time of year, keeping warm is usually the last thing on your mind. However, this is a popular scheme and we are encouraging people to plan ahead and apply for a grant this side of winter.  Improved insulation and heating can bring many benefits to a cold home. A well insulated home, with an efficient heating system can reduce fuel bills over the whole year, so it’s not only better on the pocket. It’s good for the environment too.”

Homeowners and private tenants who are are in receipt of certain benefits are amongst those who are likely to be eligible for a grant. Pensioners, families with a child under 16, pregnant women who are in receipt of a MAT B1 maternity certificate and people who receive disability benefits are being urged to call the Warm Front helpline to see whether they are eligible.

To apply for a grant, call the Warm Front helpline free on 0800 316 6007 and a trained advisor will ask you a few simple questions to see if you qualify. Lines are open Monday to Friday 8am to 6pm and 9am to 5pm on Saturdays.

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