Millions of homes and commercial buildings around the UK use gas for heating and cooking. So as you can imagine, there are also millions of pipes running under the ground, to transport gas everywhere it’s needed.
Gas arrives in the UK from offshore fields in the North Sea and Irish Sea, or by pipeline from Ireland, Belgium and Holland. A small amount is produced in mainland UK.
The next stage is ‘transmission’. National Grid owns all the gas transmission infrastructure in the UK. The gas starts in reception terminals, where it’s checked for quality and then injected into the national transmission system. Compressor stations keep it flowing freely.
The gas leaves the transmission system at 49 different points around the UK, and is transferred to the distribution networks, which deliver it to customers.
Most gas is distributed through one of the eight UK Gas Distribution Networks (GDNs), which are owned and managed by four companies:
- National Grid Gas plc – which covers the East Midlands, the West Midlands, North West England and the East of England (including North London).
- Northern Gas Networks Limited – in North East England (including Yorkshire and Northern Cumbia).
- Wales & West Utilities Limited – in Wales and South West England.
- SGN – in Scotland and Southern England (including South London).