WPD expands DSR programme, launches tenders across Midlands and South West


Western Power Distribution is launching a tender for more demand-side response (DSR) to help balance its networks.

The company began a flexibility trial in the Midlands last year, which went live in April this year. It now seeks expressions of interest from half-hourly metered businesses that can cut consumption or increase generation in Rugeley, Northampton, Beaumont Leys, Exeter and South Hams and Plymouth areas.

WPD has said it will further expand the programme next year.

What and how much?

The network operator will pay firms to provide one or two of three different services. It plans to structure its programme so that, if their flexibility is not required, firms can bid into other flexibility products and markets.

The three services are:

  • Secure – designed to manage peak demand on the network and pre-emptively reduce network loading
  • Dynamic – developed to support the network in the event of specific fault conditions, usually during summer maintenance
  • Restore – designed to help with network restoration following rare fault conditions.

Secure will pay firms an ‘arming fee’ between £75/MWh and £118/MWh, depending on location. It will also pay a utilisation fee of £150MWh.

Dynamic pays a small availability fee but a utilisation fee of £300/MWh.

Restore pays £600/MWh.

Firms can provide either Secure or Dynamic in most areas, and make themselves available for Restore services.

However, there are penalties for under delivery. After a 5% tolerance, each 1% of under delivery results in 3% payment reduction. Once provision drops below 63% of contracted delivery, firms therefore effectively get nothing.

WPD project lead Matt Watson said the firm hoped not to get to that position, but had structured the regime to emphasise the importance of reliable delivery.


Providers declare their availability a week ahead and must then be ready to deliver services for at least two hours on 15 minutes notice.

The expression of interest call closes at 5pm on 11 July. WPD will publish results and begin procurement on 25 July with the service to go live on 31 October.

See details of zones and required services in the Expression of Interest document here.

  • Interested in demand-side response and battery storage? The Energyst is surveying businesses to understand challenges and opportunities. Your views will help form the research component of a new market report. Tell us what is working, and what is not, here.

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  1. An extract from my recent email to WPD:

    “At long last there’s some pretty colours this side of Hinkley Point! What a shame North Cornwall isn’t included?”

    in deepest darkest Sunny South West England


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