gwynedd community

A social housing landlord and a social enterprise in Gwynedd have received funding from Wales & West Utilities to further the outreach of its employed Energy Wardens to directly support vulnerable residents in staying safe in the home.

Wales & West Utilities has provided £100,000 over two years to a project which will see Adra and Datblygiadau Egni Gwledig build on the success of their Proiect Sero Net Gwynedd. This funding will directly support vulnerable people, both within their homes and community hubs, to access practical advice on the dangers of carbon monoxide, as well as energy advice to improve their financial independence, health and wellbeing, whilst increasing their confidence to manage household utility costs.

Gas emergency and pipeline service, Wales & West Utilities has provided the funding as part of its Vulnerability and Carbon Monoxide Allowance (VCMA).

Dylan Thomas, Adra’s Communities and Partnerships Assistant Manager, explains:

We know how difficult things are and the situation in Gwynedd is no different. This project will build on our previous work, which saw us employ Energy Wardens to provide help directly to our residents, on a range of matters including energy conservation and sharing good practice.

We know from speaking to residents that they’re worried that the impact of the cost-of-living crisis will affect their ability to replace older, inefficient gas appliances so this project specifically seeks to address the safety aspect of the risks of carbon monoxide poisoning and the steps people can take to keep themselves, and their families, safe.

The funding will allow the Energy Wardens to work with small groups of residents in community-based activities which will be delivered within post-industrial areas in rural locations including Bethesda, Llanberis, Caernarfon and Penygroes, Blaenau Ffestiniog and Pen Llyn.

The Energy Wardens will provide relevant information to create awareness of the dangers of carbon monoxide, signpost people to available grants, provide energy efficiency and savings advice whilst also referring customers to other agencies who can advise and support on fuel debts.

Carbon monoxide (CO), known as the ‘silent killer’ because you can’t see it, smell it or taste it, kills 50 people a year in England and Wales and hospitalises many more. In the UK, there are more than 4,000 visits to Accident and & Emergency for treatment of carbon monoxide poisoning – which can often lead to lasting neurological damage. Even low levels of exposure over an extended period can cause serious health issues, including brain injuries.

Energy Warden Ianto Shea and Wales & West Utilities Customer Support Officer Carwyn Williams outside the Bethesda hub

Dylan Thomas continued:

This funding is vital to extend the reach of our community work. Safety is of paramount importance, and we expect our customers to be supported to have a greater understanding of the importance of gas safety and the dangers associated with CO, whilst having an increased confidence to know what to do if they suspect carbon monoxide poisoning.

We are grateful to Wales & West Utilities for its support in helping us to benefit more lives of people locally.

Adra provides quality homes in north Wales and looks after 6,800 homes and provides services to over 15,000 local customers.

Tom Robinson, VCMA Project Coordinator at Wales & West Utilities, said:

We’re delighted that this funding will enhance the great work that Adra and Datblygiadau Egni Gwledig is doing in the Gwynedd area.

By working in partnership, we can reach more people, providing them with the help they need to ensure they receive the right support and help with their bills, as well as keeping them safe and warm in their own homes.

Between April 2021 to March 2026, Wales & West Utilities has £7m to spend on projects which support consumers in vulnerable situations and raise awareness of the dangers of carbon monoxide and keep people safe from the ‘silent killer’.

Funding is made from the Vulnerability and Carbon Monoxide Allowance (VCMA), and 75% of the money will be spent on projects relevant to Wales and south west England only, while 25% will be spent on collaborative projects with the other gas networks across the whole of the UK.

If you have a project that you think Wales & West Utilities could support, either individually or collaboratively with other gas networks, then contact Wales & West Utilities at

Wales & West Utilities, the gas emergency and pipeline service, brings energy to 7.5m people across the south west of England and Wales. If you smell gas, or suspect the presence of carbon monoxide, call us on 0800 111 999 straight away, and our engineers will be there to help any time of day or night.