Bristol Energy has ceased trading
Bristol Energy was owned and operated by Together Energy, which closed in January 2022. All customers will be transferred to British Gas under Ofgem's Supplier of Last Resort Scheme.
To find out more, see our article on Together Energy's closure.
Once run by the Bristol City Council, the energy supplier was sold to Together Energy in 2020 and ceased trading in January 2022.
About Bristol Energy
Bristol Energy was founded in 2015 by Bristol City Council. Being created and run by a council was supposed to set Bristol Energy apart from the crowd. The aim was that all of its profits would go towards the local community, helping to tackle social and environmental challenges faced by the people of Bristol.
Financial losses prompted the council to put Bristol Energy up for sale in June 2020. It sold its entire residential customer base to Together Energy for £14 million in September. This sale included the supplier's residential customer base, its brand name and its operating company. In January 2022, Together Energy went bust and British Gas was appointed Supplier of Last Resort by Ofgem and took over their customers.
- 2015 — Bristol Energy is founded by Bristol City Council to sell cheap, clean energy and benefit the city.
- 2017 — After a year of trading, the supplier reports a loss of £7.7 million, pushing the projected date for returning a profit back to 2021.
- 2018 — Bristol Energy has 76,000 customers.
- 2019 — The supplier receives a €1.9 million grant from the European Investment Bank and the European Commission to fund renewable energy.
- 2020 — Bristol Energy sells its domestic customer base to Together Energy for £14 million. It sells it's business accounts to Yü Energy for £1.34 million.
- 2020 — Together Energy goes bust due to soaring gas prices and all customers are transferred to British Gas.
When was Bristol Energy Sold?
Bristol Energy Limited was originally owned by the Bristol City Council. The council founded the supplier in 2015 using £27 of public funding. In total, the council invested £36 million into Bristol Energy before selling it for £14 million to Together Energy in September 2020.
Upon creating Bristol Energy, the council predicted that it would start to make a profit in 2019. However, this was not the case. While the company continued to gain more customers, this increased its running costs. In 2019, Bristol Energy returned a loss of £10 million. The council sold Bristol Energy because it could no longer pour more funding into the failing supplier in order to keep it afloat.
Bristol Energy Customer? What to do next
If you were one of Bristol Energy and Together Energy’s 176,000 customers, we've prepared an FAQ to help answer your questions about what will happen next and what you need to do whilst you wait for your account to be transferred to British Gas.
Bristol Energy Frequently Asked Questions
1) I'm a Bristol Energy customer - will I continue to receive energy?
Due to Ofgem's Supplier of Last Resort (SoLR) scheme, customers will continue to receive electricity and gas. Any energy supplier that stops trading has its licence revoked, and a bidding process is started to reassign their customers to another supplier, according to the scheme's terms.
When an energy supplier goes out of business, it will often take its website offline shortly after, so we recommend logging in to your customer portal as soon as possible and downloading any bills and statements so you have a written record of this information.
2) Will my energy tariff change?
Former Bristol Energy customers will be put on a deemed tariff rate, which will be protected by the energy price cap. We recommend that you either shop around for a better deal or request British Gas place you on a different tariff because these are some of the most expensive rates a supplier can charge. When you leave your appointed new supplier under the SoLR scheme, you are not required to pay exit fees.
3) How can I contact my new supplier?
4) I’ve already changed supplier. Will the switch still go ahead?
If you had already started switching away from Bristol Energy, the switch should still go through, and any Direct Debit you had set up with them should be automatically cancelled. We still advise you to double-check with your bank just to be sure.
5) I had credit on my Bristol Energy account. Will this be refunded?
All customer credit will still be honoured under the terms of the Ofgem SoLR scheme.
6) I was in debt with Bristol Energy. Am I still required to pay it?
You will still be responsible for any outstanding Bristol Energy debts. British Gas will let you know whether they will take on your debt or if you will have to work out a payment plan with an administrator, a company that takes over a failing business.
7) I don't want British Gas to provide my energy. Is it possible for me to switch to a different supplier?
After the transfer from Bristol Energy to British Gas has gone ahead, you're free to switch to another supplier without incurring any exit fees or penalties. We work with a panel of top energy suppliers at Selectra, including British Gas and EDF. To learn more about our best deals, call 020 3936 0059 or request a free callback now.
Bristol Energy was committed to providing green energy. While it didn't always provide 100% renewable energy, Bristol Energy eventually reached this milestone in 2020.
Between April 2019 and March 2020, Bristol Energy managed to get an impressive 100% of its energy from renewable energy sources, up from 79% the previous year.
Bristol Energy Tariffs and Prices
Bristol Energy offered gas, electricity and dual fuel tariffs for domestic use. It used to provide business energy tariffs, but these accounts were sold to Yü Energy in August 2020.
Alongside its standard variable tariff, Bristol Energy also offered three fixed rate tariffs to households across the UK. All three provided 100% green electricity. None of the Bristol Energy tariffs charged exit fees.
Below, we break down each of the Bristol Energy tariffs.
Bristol Energy Standard tariff
In addition to providing 100% renewable electricity, this tariff also offset 50% of the carbon emissions from customer’s gas consumption.
BE Super Green tariff
The BE Super Green tariff offered fixed prices for a period of two years. By signing up to this tariff, customers could donate £20 to one of Bristol Energy’s environmental or social projects, and it also offset 100% gas.
BE Simply Green tariff
Compared to the other Bristol Energy tariffs, this one was the cheapest. As with the standard tariff, this Bristol Energy tariff offset 50% of the carbon emissions from customer’s gas consumption. Prices were fixed for one year.
Bristol Energy app
Bristol Energy had a mobile energy app where customers could check their account balance, bills, energy usage and even submit meter readings wherever and whenever they wanted.
Bristol Energy Smart Meters
A smart meter can help you cut back on your energy costs because it allows you to monitor your usage in near real-time. Below, we answer some common questions regarding Bristol Energy smart meters for customers.
Did Bristol Energy do smart meters?
Yes. Bristol Energy supported and installed smart meters. In 2018 and the first half of 2019, it was installing 1st generation smart meters, known as SMETS1, but as of May 2019, it switched to SMETS2.
Bristol Energy did not support the following meters:
- 3-phase meters
- Dynamically tele-switching meters (DTS)
- Related meters or MPANs when you have two meters that work interdependently
Bristol Energy Extra Services
We’ve covered Bristol Energy tariffs and smart meters, but that isn’t all energy companies offer customers. From the Warm Home Discount, to charity donations and the Bristol Energy Hub, let’s break down all the extra services Bristol Energy provided.
Warm Home Discount?
Bristol Energy offered its customers the Warm Home Discount. Bristol Energy was under no obligation to take part in the government scheme as it had less than 250,000 customers, but staying true to its core value of helping those in need, the supplier volunteered to join in. To find out more about the scheme, including who is eligible and how to apply, read Selectra’s Warm Home Discount guide.
Additional help for vulnerable customers
As well as taking part in the Warm Home Discount scheme, Bristol Energy offered a number of additional services that were designed to help families with young children, pensioners, disabled customers and people suffering from chronic illness. The following services are just a selection of how Bristol Energy set out to help such customers:
- Priority Services Register - this ensured vulnerable customers were forewarned and helped first in the case of energy related emergencies, such as power cuts.
- Intermediary Nomination Scheme - bills could be sent to a nominated family member/friend instead of the customer if needed.
- Gas Safety Checks - customers receiving means tested benefits could ask for a free gas safety check if they had not had one within the last 12 months.
- Move Prepayment Meter - if a customer was unable to or had difficulty accessing their meter due to its location, Bristol Energy would move it for free (providing it was practical to do so).
Bristol Energy Charities & Funds
Giving back to the local community was one of Bristol Energy’s objectives. It supported Caring in Bristol, which offers help and aid to the homeless in the city. If customers quoted ‘caring’ when switching to Bristol Energy, the supplier donated £30 to the charity.
Similarly, its Fuel Good Fund was designed to help households in fuel poverty. Customers who quoted ‘Fuelgood’ when signing up for a tariff, would donate £15 to the fund, giving customers the chance to give back and help those in need.
Bristol Energy Hub
The Bristol Energy Hub was the supplier's unique customer service point based in the centre of Bristol. Customers could drop in and meet with someone face to face for:
- help to pay energy bills
- help to understand energy bills
- information on switching energy suppliers
- advice on being more energy efficient
The Bristol Energy Hub is now closed.
Reviews and verdict: What do customers say?
Bristol Energy reviews were rather mixed. Customers praised its good customer service, claiming call centre staff were very friendly and helpful. Where reviews really shone was price, with customers consistently giving the supplier top marks for value for money.
Some customers, but by no means all, complained about Bristol Energy’s billing system, stating they had received a number of inaccurate bills.
For a more detailed analysis of Bristol Energy reviews, including a break down of reviews based on customer service, value for money, billing and complaints handling give Selectra’s Bristol Energy Reviews page a read.