The General Election is a mere four weeks away. With Labour and the Conservatives neck and neck in the polls and the rise to prominence of several smaller parties, it’s anyone’s guess who will form the next Government. With all the parties vying for attention on the airwaves and the doorstep it can be tricky to work out just what they stand for and what they’d do nationally and locally.
We decided to make things a little simpler for our staff by hosting our very own hustings at our Bristol offices last night. What’s a hustings I hear you say? Well, it’s an interactive “town hall” style meeting where local candidates are invited to present their respective party and local manifestos before taking questions from the audience.
In front of a packed atrium, the Conservative, Labour, Lib Dem and Green candidates for the Bristol West constituency (OVO’s local seat) were grilled by our Head of Corporate Affairs Jessica Lennard. Before opening up to a general Q and A, we focused the chaired discussion on the issues closest to our employees’ hearts. Not surprisingly, energy and environmental policy was first on the agenda.
Lib Dem candidate Stephen Williams pointed to his parties ‘Five Green Laws’ to protect the environment. Standing in for Labour candidate Thangam Debbonaire, Kye Dudd hoped to win over voters by pointing to Labour’s promise of a price freeze. Looking at the bigger picture, the Green candidate Darren Hall wanted to see a zero-waste circular economy and an energy system fully powered by renewable energy. The Conservative candidate Claire Hiscott pointed to the Conservative led Government’s record on increasing investment in renewables, setting up the Green Investment Bank and rolling out the Green Deal.
From left to right – Darren Hall (Green), Kye Judd (Labour), Claire Hiscott (Conservative) and Stephen Williams (Lib Dem)
On healthcare, discussion focussed on NHS funding, GP hours, mental health and the hotly contested issue of whether the NHS should remain wholly in public hands. The discussion on transport covered increasing rail fares and the need to improve local bus and cycling routes. The audience also challenged the candidates on tackling the deficit, international trade agreements, the cost of housing in Bristol and tuition fees.
Concluding, Stephen Williams said the Lib Dems would moderate government spending to ensure the electorate are given a fair deal and the economy is safeguarded. Kye Dudd suggested that Labour’s policies such as a price freeze, capping rail fares, and more spending on NHS staff would raise living standards. Darren Hall reminded the audience of the Green Party’s new approach to tackling current problems through social and environmental justice. Claire Hiscott defended the Tory record and reminded voters that only a strong economy can ensure public services can be fully funded and effective.
Hopefully this has given our employees some food for thought over the coming weeks before polling day. Thanks for all of those who took part!
OVO Energy Ltd, registered office 1 Rivergate Temple Quay Bristol, BS1 6ED, company no. 06890795 registered in England and Wales, VAT No. 100119879
Additional terms and conditions
Please see below for full terms and conditions on 33% renewable electricity, 3% interest rewards, exit fees and saving claims.
1Monthly cost - Representative monthly direct debit costs based on a non-economy-7, dual-fuel, medium user (3100 kWhs elec. and 12500 kWhs gas) paying in advance by direct debit, including online discount. All rates correct as of 23/08/16, but may go up or down.
2Weekly cost - Representative weekly costs based on a non-economy-7, dual-fuel, medium user (3100 kWhs elec. and 12500 kWhs gas). All rates correct as of 23/08/16, but may go up or down.
3Pay Monthly Savings are based on the average estimated annual costs for new PAYM OVO customers quoted through the OVO website (based on household and/or consumption information provided by those customers), compared to their current supplier and tariff. Comparisons taken between 01/01/2016 and 11/10/16. Incl VAT. Actual savings may vary according to your current supplier or tariff, individual tariff options, household information, consumption and location.
4Pay As You Go Savings are based on the average estimated annual costs for new PAYG OVO customers quoted through the OVO website (based on household and/or consumption information provided by those customers), compared to their current supplier and tariff. Comparisons taken between 01/01/2016 and 11/10/16. Incl VAT. Actual savings may vary according to your current supplier or tariff, individual tariff options, household information, consumption and location.
We include almost twice as much renewable electricity as the national average: At least 33% of electricity in all of our tariffs comes from renewable sources. The national average, according to Ofgem as at March 2014 was 16.7%. For more information please visit this page.
33% of your electricity comes from renewable sources: 33% renewable electricity as standard as of 1st April 2015. Renewable electricity is generated from wind, solar, geothermal, wave, tidal, hydro, biomass, landfill gas, sewage treatment plant gas and biogas.
3% interest: Calculated at 3% per year, paid monthly based on number of days in credit and the amount left in your account after you’ve paid your bill. OVO Interest Reward is capped at 12 times the amount of the current direct debit amount and is available to customers paying by advance direct debit. Terms apply: http://www.ovoenergy.com/terms/
95% of new customers save when switching to OVO: Based on all new customer signups between 01/02/2016 and 31/07/2016
94% of surveyed customers would recommend us: OVO conducted a survey of their customers in between 1st January 2016 and 15th April 2016. Out of 15,312 customers who responded, over 94% rated OVO 6+ when asked 'how likely would you be to recommend us to a friend and family, on a scale of 1 to 10.
Britain's top rated energy provider: Britain's top rated energy provider in the Which? 2015 satisfaction survey. Survey conducted in October 2015. Awarded in January 2016.