The head of customer services at regional electricity distribution company UK Power Networks has apologised to Suffolk businesses which suffered power cuts following the recent storms.

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More than 80 business leaders attended a Suffolk Chamber of Commerce networking lunch at Wherstead Park to hear from Matt Rudling, director of customer services at UK Power Networks, which is based in Fore Hamlet, Ipswich.

Mr Rudling spoke about how the company responded to the St Jude’s Day storm last October and those over the Christmas period, and how it works with local businesses and the community when the lights go out.

He said: “It was a pleasure to be asked to speak at the lunch and share some detail about UK Power Networks and the role we play in ensuring that businesses in and around Suffolk get a reliable electricity supply. Building relationships with our key stakeholders is vital to ensuring we understand their needs and can continually improve our services. If anyone was without power, following the recent storms, I wholeheartedly apologise.”

John Dugmore, chief executive of Suffolk Chamber, said: “We were delighted to have Matt speak to a group of Suffolk business leaders.

“Most businesses cannot operate without power, and it’s not until the ‘lights go out’ for any length of time that we fully appreciate the impact to the economy, be it a manufacturer, a technology services providers, a restaurant or a high street retailer.

“The chamber will continue to work closely with Matt and his team at UK Power Networks to push the message of the importance of business continuity and resilience planning, but also to ensure that UK Power Networks utilises the chamber’s communication channels to reach a wider business audience to inform, update and advise on power related issues.”

Peter Funnell, president of Suffolk Chamber, added: “We look forward to working with UK Power Networks, and their key stakeholders, to contribute to their plan to be the most reliable, most innovative, lowest price electricity distribution group in Great Britain.”

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