Dorchester to benefit from £2.5m investment in electricity infrastructure

Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN) is investing £2.5 million to boost the resilience and strength of the power supply for residents and business owners in a busy Dorset town. 

Situated in the historic market town of Dorchester, the multi-million pound upgrade project - which starts on Monday 18 May - will centre around the primary substation on Trinity Street, and has been identified as work of critical importance in line with SSEN’s regulator, Ofgem and the UK Government. 

The seven-month long programme of works will keep the infrastructure supplying the area’s 12,000 customers resilient and secure by replacing the existing Dorchester Primary Substation with new transformers and switchboard, and a more efficient reconfigured layout of the substation. 

Tim Eccleston is SSEN’s Project Manager for the Dorchester Town Centre upgrade. He said: “We’re delighted to be able to carry out these works for our Dorchester customers, to ensure they have a power supply that not only suits their current requirements, but will serve the town and those who live and work here for many years to come. 

“While we will do all we can to minimise any possible noise and disruption for those near to the Trinity Street substation, I also want to assure our customers that we are adhering to the strict Government guidelines on social distancing, so we can ensure the safety of both our colleagues and our customers. 

“While we are unable to hold a public engagement due to the coronavirus pandemic, that would enable residents and business owners to come along to meet the SSEN project team and discuss the works, I want our customers to know that we will be available to address any questions raised by the community. With this in mind, we have carried out letter drops to all nearby homes and businesses containing details of the project and various ways of contacting the team.” 

Network reliability is a key priority for SSEN and the customers its serves. Following a series of discussions, SSEN took the decision to make the investment to further improve network resilience, and future-proof its infrastructure for customer’s changing demands. This is part of SSEN’s commitment to taking a “you said, we did” approach to investing in its vital infrastructure.  

While there are no Planned Service Interruptions (PSI) for the duration of these works SSEN is aware that customers may generally have concerns relating to power cuts during this time. To assist with this SSEN has extended its Priority Services Register (PSR) to those who are categorised at ‘high risk’ and ‘extremely high risk’ of severe illness from coronavirus, so they are now eligible to sign up for additional support through the free, tailored service. This includes those following government guidelines who have received a letter from the NHS to socially shield for a 12-week period. 

Customers are also eligible for SSEN's Priority Services Register if they:  

  • Are deaf or hard of hearing
  • Have a disability
  • Live with children under five
  • Are blind or partially sighted
  • Have a chronic illness
  • Use medical equipment/aids reliant on electricity
  • Are over 60
  • Would benefit from PSR services for any other reason, even if temporarily


SSEN produces its Priority Services Register leaflets in 11 different languages; all of which are also available to read and download from its website, by going to: www.ssen.co.uk/psr. The website will also translate every page to over 100 languages, and read 33 of them aloud; simply by clicking on the Accessibility ‘triple A’ button in the top right hand corner. 

To find out more, please go to the Priority Services Register page on our website: www.ssen.co.uk/psr, where SSEN’s multi-language PSR leaflets can also be accessed and downloaded. 

To read more about the ways in which teams are working to keep your power flowing during the coronavirus pandemic, please visit this page on our website: https://www.ssen.co.uk/covid19response/.