National Grid ESO - connecting solar farm to grid

Connect to the grid

Everything you need to know about getting connected to the National Electricity Transmission System (NETS), your compliance obligations, the Grid Code and Connection and Use of System Code (CUSC).

National Grid ESO is responsible for developing, maintaining and operating efficient networks to facilitate competition in the supply of electricity.

We handle all aspects of contracts to use the National Electricity Transmission System (NETS) – and facilitate your connection to the transmission system.

Whether you’re an engineer for an established energy business, or looking to invest in your first wind farm, National Grid ESO connections managers are on hand to work with you throughout the whole connection process.

National Grid ESO - domestic connections - family on sofa

Connecting your home or business

If you have an enquiry about connecting your home or business property to the grid, please contact your local distribution network operator. 

At National Grid ESO, we move high-voltage electricity around the country and pass it to distribution network operators who then reduce the voltage and distribute electricity to homes and businesses around the country. 

If you need to be connected to your local distribution network, click here to find out who your distribution network operator is.

The connections process - step by step

1. Understand the type and scope of your project 

This will include details such as generation or demand, location, size and Tx or Dx (when this applies).

2. Schedule a pre-application meeting or get in touch with our Connections team 

We’ll go through your project plan with you and provide you with all the details you’ll need to submit an application to connect to the grid.

We’ll also give you an idea of the works that need to be carried out to connect you as well a rough connection date. 

Depending on the type of project you’re planning, the relevant local distribution network operator and Transmission Owner may also attend the pre-application meeting.

3. Submit your application to us

Submit Application form

Submit DRC form

Pay the application fee

4. Your Transmission Owner carries out initial technical competency checks on the project

Once Transmission Owner comes back and declares that the project is competent, and the application fee is paid, you will receive your offer within 3 months.

5. A kick off meeting between National Grid ESO and your Transmission Owner takes place

This is a discussion about what you’ve requested in your application, what system studies will be required to achieve it and the timescales.

6. Your Transmission Owner conducts system studies

This is to assess the available connection options and determine the required system reinforcement works that need to happen in order to connect you.​​​​​​

7. Your offer 

Working hand in hand with your Transmission Owner, a Connection Offer is then created.

This contains all the information related to your project, such as the works that need to be carried out and charges for using the National Electricity Transmission System (NETS).

Don’t worry, you’ll have 3 months to address queries and iron out any issues.

8. Security payments

Once the offer is signed, you will need to pay for a portion of the works to be carried out to enable the connection, in the event the contract is terminated at a later date.

More guidance on security payments can be found here

Your compliance obligations

National Grid ESO also ensure the rules which govern the industry’s roles and responsibilities are fit for purpose.

We do this by being the administrator of the Grid Code and the Connection and Use of System Code (CUSC) among other codes.

What is the Grid Code?

The Grid Code specifies all technical requirements that anyone who wishes to connect or use the National Electricity Transmission System (NETS).

Who does the Grid Code apply to?

All suppliers, DNOs, generators whether supplying, balancing or drawing from the transmission system must meet these technical requirements in order to be connected to it.

This is to ensure that all safety, security, reliability standards are met across the board and the NETS is fit for purpose.

Does the Grid Code change?

Yes.

The Grid Code is an evolving document to ensure that electricity is moved safely, reliably and efficiently through the system.

It is our responsibility to maintain and update the Grid Code. We do this by working with stakeholders in the energy industry through a robust consultation process.

If you want to get involved, find out how here.

All changes are subject to approval by Ofgem who ensure we’re doing everything we can to enable the transformation to a sustainable energy system and ensure the delivery of reliable, affordable energy for all consumers.

Where can I see the latest modifications to the Grid Code?

You can view the latest modifications to the Grid Code, proposals and consultations here

Download the Grid Code

The most current version of the Grid Code was published on 4th September 2019.

Download the Grid Code.

 

What is the CUSC?

The Connection and Use of System Code (CUSC) is the contractual framework that outlines various commercial obligations for being connected to and using the National Electricity Transmission System (NETS).

Who does the CUSC apply to?

All suppliers, DNOs, generators whether supplying, balancing or drawing from the transmission system must agree to the terms set out in the CUSC in order to be connected.

This is to ensure that all costs and charges associated with the upkeep and development of the transmission system are appropriately shared across all relevant parties and we’re able to deliver, reliable, affordable energy for all consumers.

Does the CUSC change?

Yes, like the Grid Code, we administrate all modifications to the CUSC.

We facilitate industry consultation and all modifications to it and these have to be approved by either Ofgem or the CUSC Modifications Panel.

View the latest modifications to the CUSC.

Download the CUSC

The most current version of the CUSC was published on 13th January 2020. 

Download the CUSC.

Download the Grid Code

Last published: 4 September 2019

Download

Download the CUSC

Last published: 13 January 2020

Download