Wayleave Compensation Payments: What are they and how do I claim?

A Wayleave agreement or compensation is an annually renewed right of use for utilities over or under a private land giving way to a payment to the landowner. For example, electricity box supply companies may arrange a wayleave agreement payment in order to put poles on your land or cabling under the ground. Effectively the company will pay you a ‘rent’ in return for this privilege.

Wayleave Agreement Wayleave Payments

Across the UK large metal power pylons have long divided opinion. Maybe you have overhead electric cables to house and residential areas nearby. Some people view them as essential, others as unsightly and intrusive. Whatever the point of view you hold, the power needs to travel from source to destination somehow. But if you’re blighted by power lines, pylons and posts, there may be a silver lining in the form of wayleave agreements or wayleave payments.

What is a Wayleave Agreement or Wayleave Compensation Payment?

Essentially the WCP is a payment made to an individual. This payment is for the passage of high voltage power over their land. Effectively the power company is “renting” space above your drive or garden. This is for power lines or land space for poles.

Not everyone is entitled to these wayleave payments though, which is where things get tricky. Firstly, compensation can only be paid “once”. This means if you’ve claimed before, or the previous owner claimed, then you’re out of luck. With this in mind if you’re looking at claiming on the huge metal pylons, think carefully. You’ll have to be very lucky as they’ve likely been claimed on by developers and previous landowners.

Things get interesting when you scale wayleave compensation down for single wooden poles. These are less conspicuous than their larger metal companions and most of the time, if you have them travelling over your land, you’ll rarely bat an eye. These are the poles and lines that have been claimed on less.

Savvy Dad readers’ looking out of their windows will likely notice all manner of wires cutting their way through the landscape. Possibly even overhead electric cables to house and building structures in the area. However, it is important not to confuse telecoms lines with power lines. Generally speaking, rural villages and suburbs are those that would most likely have wayleave agreement claim potential.

I highly recommend the book below as an interesting read by an ex-surveyor. The book has been used to support discussions with some utility companies where disagreements have been an issue.

Think you might have wayleave agreement payment claim potential?

We would be doing our readers disfavour if we didn’t point out that claiming any payments due to you as a landowner can be done by yourself alone. However, unlike the recent years when people have been claiming back their PPI themselves, wayleave claims can be trickier, more lengthy, and ultimately unsuccessful if you’re not eligible for any reason.

So it is with a slightly heavy heart that we admit it might be worth considering using the larger chartered surveyor firms who are currently offering to take on your claims for you. These firms, in exchange for a percentage, will pursue, investigate and sort the claims resolution for you. If you’re uncomfortable doing it yourself, or wary that you may need to use a solicitor at some point to act on your claim, then these surveyor firms are the next best bet.

Please be aware that you should NEVER agree to any firm taking on your wayleave claim for anything less than a “no win, no fee” type offer. Looking at the biggest surveyor firms assisting claims at the moment they offer to do everything in exchange for 10-20% of the claim worth.

To find out which energy company is responsible for your lines you’ll need to consult the ENA Website where you’ll find information in addition to this article along with details of whether claims have already taken place.

Some companies such as Western Power detail their power lines on a map on their websites. They also have Western Power wayleave information and details of policies and claims procedures for Western Power wayleave compensation. It’s worth checking your local supplier’s websites for something similar.

Is it worth claiming for Wayleave compensation?

In short, yes. There’s no hard and fast rule to the value of payments. In theory, they take into account how the posts or lines impact your property value, access, and scope for development. We would always say expect little, be surprised by a lot. The payments can range wildly from 1% of your property value to 4%, certainly something worth pursuing.

This is why we mentioned earlier using a wayleave agreement surveyor to claim for you. They’re skilled in the field, and ultimately are far more likely to negotiate a larger payment. A larger payment that would most likely negate the percentage you’d give up to them in their commission. It also means you can sit back and let them pursue the wayleave claim, which can take up to nearly two years. Plus if you’re home is mortgaged, they’ll assist in working with your mortgage lender. This is important too as “technically” they still own your home.

We make no recommendation for which wayleave company you might use, as this claim process CAN be done yourself. But for reference, the claim company with the biggest track record (but sadly the highest wayleave commission) is Thomson Broadbent. You can also check out Sherwill Drake Forbes reviews too.

Do you have a wayleave agreement BT are communicating with you about?

If you have Openreach kit on your land or property it’s likely there will be a wayleave agreement BT has discussed with you. All of the tips and info above, together with those in my article on wayleave payments and wayleave easements will likely be able to help you out with advice on how to discuss issues arising. The BT Openreach website also has details on how to access the forms associated with OFCOM statutory code notice (Paragraph 39(1)) which will need to be completed if you’re the land owner and have a wayleave agreement BT is looking into for you.

Please chip in with comments of wayleave payment successes, issues, or failures. Use the comments section below, particularly if you’ve claimed yourself. We’d love to hear about your experiences.

Other questions about Wayleave?

This article has been popular with lots of my readers. With this in mind, I thought I’d put together a few more of the common questions they ask and some brief answers…

Can a Wayleave be backdated?

in the UK it is common for a wayleave to be an annually renewed process. Whilst some utility companies may attempt to make lump sum payments in order to have longer-term access (an easement). In general, it’s annually renewed. If you investigate and find out that a wayleave agreement is already in place on your property, you may be entitled to up to 6 years worth of backdated and payments in one large lump sum.

What is a BT wayleave agreement?

Companies such as BT and Openreach may offer a legal written agreement between themselves and a landowner. This happens when the utilities and services pass the landowner’s property or land. Companies like BT and Openreach have to have this permission in order to maintain, install, leave and repair their equipment. Whilst you can refuse access to this, ultimately if they complain that it’s an essential service there can be compulsory easements applied for.

How do I get a copy of my wayleave agreement?

Wayleave agreements are taxable items that must be disclosed as income from land. Therefore, they are usually disclosed on the land Registry. in order to ascertain whether there is an agreement in place on your land you will need to obtain a conveyancing deed. This can be done by contacting your local land registry services or searching online for land registries in your area.

How long does a wayleave agreement last in the UK?

Unlike an easement, which can be a permanent right of access over your land, a wayleave agreement is usually an annual thing. It’s a personal contract between the provider/utility and the land owner. This means it’s not permanent and can be terminated by giving notice. That being said, the notice can be up to a year!

Should I sign or accept a wayleave agreement or offer?

In short, no. At least, not without seeking proper qualified financial advice from a property solicitor. Doing so without proper advice could leave you open to losing the right for compensation and claims you may be entitled to and may have a huge impact on the value of your land via future diminution.

How do I find out information about who owns the pole or pylon?

In general, most poles and pylons will have markings. Whether they’re Low Voltage (LV), High Voltage (HV) or Extreme High Voltage (EHV), they will have signage or markings on them or their fencing. This marking should have a registration or pole number and hopefully a telephone number to be able to call. Most utilities and power operators in the UK will have a department you can contact via the phone. They “should” be able to deal with initial wayleave questions. In your local area, you will also have a wayleave officer. Simply typing “wayleave officer in my area” into Google should bring up a list or contact number. Your local County Council should be able to help with this if you cannot find contact details.

Who are Sherwill Drake Forbes? Who are Thomson Broadbent?

Sherwill Drake Forbes and Thomson Broadbent are independent land specialists offering support to those dealing with issues of overhead cabling and wayleave. With backgrounds in property law or chartered surveying, they offered a good level of experience when it comes to making a claim. You may have received letters from companies like Sherwill Drake Forbes or Thomson Broadbent in the post. This it’s because due to their experience and Case History they are often the best-suited people to get the most for a wayleave claim from a utility provider. That being said, claiming is still something you can do yourself. However, they command more skills to get things done quicker and often give way to a larger lump sum payout even after commission.

For other ways to supplement your income or boost your savings why not check out how to save money on food costs with extreme couponing or how to get double savings on supermarket shopping.


  1. Angela Wilkinson says:

    I have a single pole in my front garden. I have contacted Southern and Scottish power who have confirmed that nobody has previously claimed and they have today offered me £1.93 a year or a 15 year payment of £200. This seems very low are they trying it on do you think?

    1. Broadly speaking the value you’ll get depends on the location, impact on property and amount of poles/lines. That being said it does seem quite low. The thing you have to decide is commission companies can often negotiate a bigger deal (but take a cut) as they know the finesse of the system. I’m presuming you’ve done this direct, which is great – but you need to decide is £200 is acceptable to yourself. Ultimately it’s £200 you wouldn’t have had. Let us know how you choose to proceed, we’d love to hear how you get on.

      1. Mark palmer says:

        My neighbour has a wooden pole in garden there is 4 electric wires come off that onto insulators onto my house then the wire continue to other cottages along the wall can I claim for this?

        1. It’s hard to comment on individual claims. In the first instance, it may be worth identifying the utility company and asking for information about access/claims directly.

          1. Hi Savvydad
            I received a letter from Thompson Broadbent a few months ago telling me I was entitled to a Wayleave payment, to sign the attached form and send it back to make a claim.
            Before I did this I rang them up to double check this was a no win no fee claim, which I was assured it was.
            Now I have received a letter with enclosed paperwork to sign and send off saying I would have a claim for £150.04 a one off payment lasting 15years, for a low voltage cable which comes up my drive to my front door then comes directly along the front of my house. I have a semi detached house, the plan only shows the cable to my side of the house, it doesn’t show up on my neighbours side of the plan.
            There is nothing in this letter or in my previous letter to indicate how much of a percentage T&B will be taking for applying for the Wayleave.
            Ive read about other claimants payments and my one off payment of £150 for 15years doesn’t seem very much to me. re: Geoffrey Harris, is it worth bothering? Or can I apply directly to SSE myself or can T&B go back and negotiate a better fee
            Kind regards
            Alexa (Aberdeen)

          2. Hi, It’s most likely worth asking direct for comparison (unless you’re in a hurry). Similarly, contact TB and ask directly if they’re likely to be able to negotiate further.

          3. Worth mentioning also – These agreements are relatively simple to complete, and the surveyors fee paid by the electricity company to the agents is more than sufficient considering the actual work that goes into each agreement. Obviously I’m slightly biased, but as a claim handler at PCC we don’t take a % of the client fee because there’s really no need to, its excessive.

            Also to point out that Savvydad is right that TB has the highest fee, but there are by no means the most successful. They often overstate the money they can get, they also suggest that low voltage agreements are negotiable – they’re absolutely not. The payments are based on fixed rates per each instance of apparatus.

            200.09 overhead cables
            150.04 underground
            350 for overhead cables, pole and staywire.

  2. Geoffrey Harris says:

    It seems a very small amount to receive? I keep getting letters from Thompson Broadbent offering their services at 20% plus VAT. Now whilst every little helps I wonder if it is worth bothering? I have to low voltage cables crossing my front garden, not insulated and the power company keep saying they are going to replace them but it never happens. Should I claim?

    1. Honestly, I wouldn’t like to make the decision for you. What I would say is personally I’d consider my expected time I would be staying in the property. If I was planning moving home in a few years I’d claim as it takes so long to actually “get” the payment finalised and through. If I was in my “for life” home, I’d be inclined to give T&B a call and see what they think they “might” get. Remember they hold case studies and bargaining power due to precedents they can cite. Ultimately though, it does seem a low amount so even is T&B get a little more 20% fees might still be worth it due to the difference they could get.

  3. P Arbuthnott says:

    I have a single pole in my garden which feeds electricity solely to my house. I have been told that I am therefore unable to claim anything as it is only for my use. I also have a large support cable for a pole in my neighbours field, and again I have been told I am unable to claim anything. Should I accept this response?

    1. Did you apply direct, or use a company to apply on your behalf? Potentially, if the pole only serves your property, I think they may have a defence again payments. However, the company applying on your behalf (if you used one) should have details of the application and rationale for opinion.

  4. I have a street light positioned in/on my front lawn, would there be any Chance I could claim anything?

    1. It gets trickier with lighting. Is the road unadopted?

  5. Hi.
    I’ve just bought a property with a wooden pole in the garden. Several wires run from it. Some to me, and others I can’t be sure about as they are obscured by trees. The neighbouring property is quite some distance away.

    I see that you can apply on the UK Power Networks site, but do you think it would be better to use a wayleave company?
    If you apply yourself and reject an offer, can you then go to a wayleave company?


    1. As far as I am aware you can only “accept” one offer of compensation. So, in theory, if you felt you hadn’t been offered a fair deal when going direct yourself, you could reject and use a third party. The benefit of this would be the company, such as the one mentioned in my article, would have experience and usually leverage a higher payout. The negative is they would obviously skim commission of your amount coming back. One thing to note is if someone has claimed previously on the property you won’t be eligible. Let us know how you get on Len.

      1. Stephen webb says:

        I have all the main utilities pipes and main cables for the complete street running down my front garden approx 100ft . In the last few years I have had my garden dug up on 8 occasions for major gas leaks and just recently had a main water pipe go at edge of garden as well do you think I could get a wayleave company looking into this, as this might be a problem if I sold my house

        1. Hi Stephen. Thanks for your comment. Your case sounds particularly tricky so I highly recommend you see if there’s a wayleave officer attached for your council to support you more. Using a professional company on these tricky cases might be most suitable, but seek proper financial advice before proceeding because, as you say, there could be future property implications.

          1. Stephen webb says:

            Thank you for your comments,I have looked into my council and it doesn’t list a wayleave official,
            You said about a financial advisor to help would one be appointed if I go to a wayleave company or is that a separate issue

          2. Hi Stephen, we highly recommend using an independent financial advisor for any large money-related decisions In life. unfortunately, like many things, this will cost money. But it’s worth doing right to avoid the pitfalls and potential negative impact on your property and finances in the future. IFAs are regulated and no-biased and some may give initial ideas and thoughts upfront. You can find a large selection here https://www.unbiased.co.uk/advisers/financial-adviser/

            This is sadly why the claims companies can take such large fees as many are put off by IFA fees and drawn in by the no-win, no-fee approach.

            Sadly we cannot offer financial advice ourselves, hence referring you to IFAs. We wish you the best of luck and please do let us know how you get on.

          3. I have received a letter from Taylor Walton requesting authority to act. Have you heard of them? How do they rate in your experience?

          4. Hi Marian, I’m affraid they’re a new name to us – Not heard of them.

  6. I will.
    Thanks for your input.

  7. Hi

    I’ve heard the term ‘easement’ being banded around with wayleave payements – what is the difference?

    Also, how long would it take for a wayleave payment to process, in your experience?

    Thanks very much

    1. Hi Jeff,

      I believe the main difference is the term over which the payment compensation is awarded. Wayleave, for example, is a one-off payment paid to the claimant for the life of that post/land. Easement, to my knowledge, is the payment for a term that is not indefinite. For example, a payment giving access for a number of years.

      The length of time the claim process takes can be lengthy. Using an experienced intermediary such as TB mentioned in the article may speed things along but they’ll take a cut as commission.

      1. It’s actually the opposite way round, Wayleaves tend to be temporary and sit with the current owner, they don’t get transferred. Easements are usually written into the deeds.

        1. Thanks for the clarification, Peter. I wasn’t convinced I had it the correct way around.

  8. Update.
    I’ve sent a claim to UK Power Networks, which has been acknowledged with a “we have quite a backlog” email, so I’ll just have to wait.
    I don’t live in the house yet, but coincidentally, I’ve had a letter from one of the wayleave claim companies at my current address. (There is no equipment on the land).
    It lists the payments you can expect to receive:
    Pole. £300, Pole and Stay £380, Stay Wire £120, Strut £120, Overhead Line £45 – £90.
    Additional Stay Wires or Struts an extra £60 each.
    I don’t think anyone is going to make their fortune from a wayleave payment, but perhaps that info will be helpful to someone.
    Regards, Len.

    1. Henry Bishop says:

      Thanks – very helpful. I have 2 poles on my land, one has a stay and then there are also two underground cables going from the poles to my neighbours. I have just been offered £669 for 15 years which seems low based on your figures. I have written back and asked for £980 (300 for pole + 380 for pole with stay + 300 (2 x 150) for the two underground cables. Fingers crossed. I’ll let everyone know what reply I get but it probably won’t be soon as they say they have a big backlog and they took 8 months to reply to my original email asking for a wayleave payment with this offer!!!

  9. I have now been offered a one off (15 year) payment of £380, or an annual payment of £41.
    I’ll probably go for the one off. I doubt a claims company could get me much more, and their fees would eat into any extra I may get.
    The equipment is already there. They already have the right to come on to my land for maintenance. £380 for doing nothing. That’ll do for me!

    Regards, Len.

  10. David Douglas says:

    I have been offered a claim process for underground cables. What is your experience of claims for these please?

    1. Underground cables are something I’m uncertain of. I’ll look into it. In the meantime can you specify what sort of underground cables?

      1. Hi David

        Underground lines were added to the claim criteria as of December 2019, I work for an agents who handle the agreements (PCC). The rate is £150.04 but only for the area who are supplied by SSE (Scottish and Southern Electricity. There is no underground agreement for any of the other DNOs (as of yet).

          1. Adrian Campbell says:

            I have just received a communication from Sherwill Drake offering £150.04 for a 25 year term for an SSE underground cable which goes through a small part of our garden

  11. I have recently been offered a capitalised payment of £275 in respect of a 15 yr period for a single LV pole by the relevant network provider. Annual rate offer was £25. However, l have read that you are also entitled to a back-dated payment. Given l have lived at the affected property for about 10 yrs without any payment then l assume l will be entitled to a further 2/3 of the capitalised offer. Any advise on this point ?
    Secondly, 2 LV cables connected to the pole also traverse my property and l understood you were also entitled to a payment for each cable. Again, any advise on that point ?

    1. Most property law consultant companies seem to suggest you may be able to claim up to 6 years’ worth of backdated annual payments in one lump sum, and then continue to receive an annual payment. However, I’m unable to see any concrete evidence on this. It may be worth contacting a claims company to enquire about potential historical sums – they may openly explain the potential reasons for backdated payments.

  12. Do these payments apply to telephone lines? I have a telephone pole in my garden, near the front door of the house which carries the lines for two other houses as well as my own,

    1. Wayleave is an access provision that in theory applies to Telecoms, Utilities and Fibre companies. Contacting the company directly in the first instance may yield advice or details of the wayleave officer for your area.

  13. Ann Mears says:

    We have today received a letter with regard to “the underground electricity distribution cables that have been identified to be within our property boundary”. This is the first time we have ever come across wayleaves and found your website. We are unsure whether we should proceed, any advise. We were not aware we had a cable under our property.

    1. Hi Ann,

      I can give an opinion, but not advice. If you read the wayleave posts on my site you’ll see most companies have a “wayleave officer” attached. You can contact them to see how simple their process is. Alternatively, if you’re happy to give up a percentage you can go to the specialist Wayleave claims company. They may get you more and will be simpler, but you’ll likely pay a fee for their services.

  14. I have been informed by an outside company that I have underground electricity cables within my property boundary .How can I verify that these cables really are within my boundary

  15. Trevor Smith says:

    I have spoken to South Eastern Power Distribution( part of the Scottish and Southern Group) who cover the South East Region and Isle of Wight and they say that there is no need to go through a specialist wayleave claims firm. On application to them directly they will check whether a wayleave consent needs to be put in place or a new one executed. If so they will pay full market value for the wayleave. I guess probably not much for underground cables but better than a kick in the teeth.

  16. Adam Oliver says:

    Hi, I received a letter from a specialist Wayleave company which suggests the possible payments that can be claimed are between 1% and 6% of the value of your property, dependent upon the type/number of poles/lines/apparatus that are present at the property. This is potentially much higher than the amounts mentioned previously here. Is this realistic or just sales propaganda?

    1. Hi, Can I ask the name of the firm you’ve hard from? Have they specified in their correspondence their track record for successes and reasons for using them?

  17. Wayne Carrington says:

    I have a pole at the bottom of my garden it’s not on my land but there is a supply cable that come off across my garden to my house and it supplies two other properties those cables are actually clipped direct to my house on the brickwork do you think I’ll have a good case to claim payment for this I’ve been in my house for 18 years
    Many thanks

    1. It’s worth seeing if there’s been previous claims from previous occupants if you can.

  18. Paul Finney says:

    Hi, We have a claim being looked into via T&B If we don’t agree to the offer made, do the electricity company still have right of way onto our land to repair etc. ? Also would asking the electricity company to remove the poles prompt a larger offer ?

    1. This is a little up for debate as to if the poles existed “prior” to you taking on the land/property and are “flagged as essential” they might be able to keep them there actually causing a lower access offer being made. In most cases, it’s worth seeing if you can contact your local wayleave officer to advise as they might have examples of previous dealings with the utilities in question.

  19. hi
    my mother in law has a bt pole at the bottom of her garden with several wires coming over her property and she also has cables going under her land.the problem is that the people that have the house over the back claimed that the pole was on there land and have been claiming on it for over 30 years. it has now been proven that it is on my mother in laws land and its been there for 48 years can she claim that back dated?she got an offer from bt of about £300 as a one off payment but they told her just to sign it but not date it and then to get a whitness to sign it but not to date it ,i don’t think that is legal but what do you think?

    thank you

    1. Hi Stuart, thanks for your comment. It sounds like the neighbour may have falsely claimed for the pole. That being said, if wire/lines cross their property from the pole on your mother in law’s land I believe they are still entitled to claim for that. It may be worth clarifying with your local wayleave officer, who will be able to advise further and possibly look into the historic claims as the claims are for the address – ie. if it was claimed at “another” address, even if wrongly, then it may still be due to your mother in law. Again, the wayleave officer or a specialist wayleave company might be your best call.

  20. Melanie Morcombe says:

    Hi there, I recently received a letter from a company advising I could receive a payment for underground cables, but as you state they would take a 20% cut. I sat on the letter for a while and then decided to e-mail my local network operator myself, to see if I was eligible for a payment.

    Admittedly they had a backlog, but I received an email back from them, stating I was eligible for a payment for a “low voltage underground cable”. I was offered a couple of options (1 lump sum until May 2035, where it will revert to a [very low!] annual amount or the [low] annual amount backdated 6 years.

    I further questioned what would happen if I accepted the lump sum but then sold the property before 2035 – the response was nothing would happen. I would not have to repay any amounts. If the new owners wanted to apply, they would just need to do the same.

    So I’m probably going to go for the 15 year option as nothing to lose – it’s not a major amount but £150 for sending 2 emails is fine with me!

    1. That’s excellent Melanie. I do believe however that if you do sell the property, the new occupants will not be able to claim again. Unless things have changed. Either way, it’s a great result for you right now. Well done.

      1. Melanie Morcombe says:

        Hi savvydad! It may have changed as the response I had back was ” You don’t need to re-pay or part pay to the new owners. They would just come forward like you have to enter into their agreement and payment.”

        Maybe different network operators do things differently – who knows! 🙂

  21. I am currently emailing Western Power about the high voltage pole on our land. It is positioned around 30 feet from the house.
    They have given me 3 options. 1. A one off Fast Track payment of £2000 for a fixed 14 year contract. 2. To negotiate a settlement. 3. An annual payment of £45.33.
    Now the £2000 sounds absolutely amazing! The annual payments over 14 years would only add up to £634.62.
    So why would you negotiate??? But it now has me wondering are they trying to fob me off with a lesser amount by waving £2000 under my nose??
    An amount that is very hard to turn your nose up at! So should I go for it and negotiate or should I take the £2000 and leg it?

    1. Hi. You say the pole which you are making a claim for is a high voltage pole (HV). Can you confirm the voltage? the reason I ask is low voltage poles can often lead to one-off payments around £500-£1000 approx, depending on impact on property value. when it comes to High Voltage (HV) and Extreme High voltage (EHV) payments can rocket into the tens of thousands. If you can identify from paperwork etc the voltage range is defintitely HV (11+ Kv) this may mean that using a negotiator might be worth the 20% cut they’ll likely take for a no paymeny, no fee case.

      1. Yes it is a 11kw pole with transformer. It directly supplies our 2 closests neighbours with low voltage and then high voltage crossing our land and beyond.

        1. This is really going to depend on your postcode,the value of your property and land, and how much the cable and pole impact on your property value in terms of estimated depreciation. I’ve heard of HV claims being anything up to £17/£18k. 11KV is the lower end of the HV spectrum but it’s still worth considering your options. Essentially you need to make a bit of a gamble here, it could pay off big using a specialist to look into it for you as they can potentially command more, but you lose 20% in commission roughly. Or go with what you’ve been offered.

          1. How long would it take to negotiate? I have a HV pole in my garden as well as finding out that it has not been claimed for another pole/wire on the land. So I have a HV pole with support wires and another pole that then feeds the house. The other end of the HV pole is the transmitter? I contacted western power and they sent me a map that I have plotted everything on. They are now sending it to someone local to review. (Maybe because one pole has not been claimed).

          2. Hi, thanks for your comment. the typical duration in order to successfully claim a wayleave compensation is usually 24 to 48 months. It really depends on the complexity of the case, how many properties are involved and whether there are existing claimants.

            Useful information to have to hand might be the existing property prices in and around your area. It’s worth quoting the current market prices to any initial contacts you have as these prices will likely reduce over the coming months. Not that I’m sure this will have any impact if claiming historically. Once you have base details, see what western power say and contact your local wayleave officer to see if they can offer any additional information or support in your area. It maybe that they will offer a reasonable amount you are happy with in which case you can claim yourself. if you are not happy with the offer or feel you’re being taken for a ride then look into companies mentioned in my articles such as Thomson broadbent and sherwill Drake Forbes. They’ll take a cut in the form of commission – but it may balance the extra amount they could get through experienced negotiation.

  22. Mr Cleverley says:

    Can you help or direct me to
    How i apply to put a claim in for power cables & pole on my land

    1. In the first instance, approaching your local council with the details of the pole number etc. They should be able to redirect you to your local wayleave officer for the council/county. That’s the best way in to establishing contact at first.

  23. Mr Inglis says:


    I have been pursuing a Wayleave agreement with UKPN through TB; I have a Pole with a single stay, carrying an 11KV cable about 80′ from my house; The cable comes down and runs up and alongside my house (approx 3m off the property) for a total length of 80m.

    TB ‘appear’ to have negotiated an offer of £201 for a 5 Year Wayleave agreement, but based on your previous comments, this seems to be a very very low offer.

    If I go back to to TB and ask them to re-negotiate, then am I obliged to stay with them, or if unhappy, can I go to UKPN direct, as from your previous notes, I was expecting a more significant offer. Thanks

    1. HI, I believe that if you’ve chosen to use TB via their fee-free (no win, no fee) option, you’d likely need to pay fees if you then chose not to use them. Doing this might outweigh the difference/potential gains. Nothing to stop you going back to them and enquiring why you case might be less in amount than others you’ve seen. Obviously, all claims and values are different.

    2. Regarding your cable, are you confident it’s 11kV (HV) and not LV. The price you have been offered does sound more like an LV payment and if it’s a single cable, it’s unlikely to be HV. Furthermore 3Mts from your property might be considered a bit close for an HV cable.

  24. Ben Lilley says:

    Western power have asked me if they can relocate a pole into my garden as access is easier than replacing the pole next door….the pole has multiple cables running off to multiple houses..what would be my best course of action??

    1. Potentially I would open up dialogue directly with them and see about what payments they would offer you. Remember that all payments are of a value relative to the land value, property and imposition incurred. It can be tricky in some cases to fight pole movement as some companies can apply for the right for compulsory land usage. One of the best suggestions when assuming your property value is to look at the zoopla price index as this tends to be slightly over inflated if you’re going to use a price for comparison and negotiation.

      if you don’t get a satisfactory response from western power then contact your local wayleave officer whose details can be obtained from your council.

  25. Just to let you know my neighbour and I both have same 11v cable. Both were offered £2,000, both got letters from solicitors offering their negotiating skills. My neighbours took them up on it and did not get awarded any higher compensation and lost £500 of that £2,000 in lawyers fees. I accepted fast track and got the full £2,000.

    1. Thanks for your info Lou. You’ve hit the nail on the head regarding wayleave compensation – if you can do it yourself and have the time and the confidence then this can usually net more. However, if it’s a particularly tricky claim or set up, or if you simply want others to handle it, then a claims company with it’s knowledge “may” be better. It pretty much comes down to personal confidence and choice. Glad you had a success though, may I ask the duration of the claim? was it swift?

      1. Hi thank you for the article, it was really useful! We have an expired lease for underground electrical cabling. It is running under our garage. We have been offered £100 for 38 years which seems low to me? This is directly with the company.

        Another issue we have is that we are wanting to sell our home soon (not yet on market). Would I be best not entering into an agreement at present or waiting and letting the future buyers do this?

        Many thanks

        1. As to whether or not to get a wayleave agreement in place before a house sale is tricky to judge. Commonly, most pursuing an agreement and compensation do so because they have the intention to remain in a property as the agreement (if it allows future permissions) can affect the saleability of a property in terms of value. Whilst I would love to give you a concrete answer, it really depends on a number of factors such as value, term and potential impact of utilities. A qualified financial advisor or your local wayleave officer would be your best port of call for advice.

        2. Jody Johnson says:

          I’ve read that you can claim from 1% to 4 % of your property value, for the power company to put underground cables to your property and rent off you. Is this correct.
          SSP are due to replace an underground power supply to my property . IT WAS FIRST LAID IN 1928 , to my knowledge, so it now doesn’t comply with the current regs. It could be dangerous and a fire risk, so needs to be done. Could I ask them to do other work ie drop my curb instead of claiming compensation

          1. I suspect special arrangements like that would be via the council as a dropped curb would need permissions. I’d contact a professional to discuss agreements like this.

  26. Don Tuske says:

    SSE recently entered my land and carried out excavations along with installation of a cable without my knowledge or consent. They now want me to sign a wayleave agreement. Given their unlawful actions should I agree to this or sue them ?

    1. I would suggest first finding out whether there’s an agreement in place between previous landowners and SSE? Consulting your local wayleave officer would be interesting option as they may have details on your current property available from the land Registry. Have you had any conversations with SSE about the access they had to the land?

      1. Nick White says:

        Hi , I have looked on UK Power Networks website for anything relating to Wayleave agreements and have not found anything. Do you have a
        Pre-formatted Wayleave Agreement Claims letter that can be sent to UK Power Networks? Many thanks

  27. Ann Hinchliffe says:

    Possibly similar to Don Tuske’s experience: we’re having problems with SSE’s poor communication about wayleaves and work to be done. Team turned up yesterday unannounced despite this happening a few weeks ago and my requesting SSE to let us know in advance. (Policy docs say 5 days in advance except in emergency.) Work does need to be done on our land but we’re not happy about some of the claims the team made, whose responsibility etc, so we’re investigating. If I were you, Don, I’d be wary of any quick-fix offers from SSE. What you describe, installation of equipment without knowledge let alone consent, appals me. Good luck!

    1. Consent should always be in place otherwise it’s civil trespass which you can claim against the company of they cause damage to our make a monetary gain from your private land of its against the terms of and existing agreement. That being said, it is good to work with the companies to find a common ground as in some cases they can apply to the council for compulsory access and this might actually reduce the amount they pay in the future if a long term agreement isn’t in place

  28. Ian Paterson says:


    I have 2 poles on my property each carrying 3 x 32 HDC 11kV lines and an underground line from the nearest pole to the house for our own supply. The property value is approx £400K and the pole nearest the house is only 15 feet from our back door. We are rural with no neighbours.

    I’ve been offered a one off lump sum of £313.80 (representing £31.80 per year for the next 10 years) along with the 6 year back dated payment of £188.28. I contacted SP Energy Works directly and this was what they came back with.

    Does this sound within the ‘going rate’ ballpark?

    Appreciate you sharing your knowledge,


    1. Hi Ian,

      I wish there was a going rate. Unfortunately properties, land, utilities and conditions mean it’s very difficult to compare payouts and claims side by side. Have you tried contacting your local wayleave officers via your local council?

  29. Is there any experience of wayleave payment amounts for stringing a new fibre broadband line along existing poles that carry power and phone? Thanks

  30. Nigel Coombs says:

    We have lived in same property in South Norfolk since 2003. We have a large pole on our property and every year we would get a payment from EDF for approx £42. Then became UK Power Networks and this continued but during lockdown I realised we hadn’t had a payment for a good year or two so contacted UKPN and was told they were carrying out reviews and audits and I would hear. Now they have come back advising they will back-date payments but have asked me to sign to agree £190 for 15 year agreement or £21.61 per year. I have queried why they are halving the amount and the response was following audit (although no-one came to visit) the pole is a 50% service pole therefore reducing the amount. This sounds like a try-on to me and a cost saving exercise of a Company who make millions in profit every year.
    Do I reluctantly accept or should I (can I)contest?

    Many Thanks

    Nigel Coombs

    1. The lump sum offer is likely an “easement” agreement. It’s worth getting advice if you’re planning on selling the property within this time as it may have an effect on value as it’s mentioned on the deed. It may be worth seeing if you can find out what EDF referred to the equipment and usage as being for comparison and leverage.

  31. JAMES EVANS says:


    We have a large 25KVA i believe pole in the corner of our garden (wooden pole). This pole is rotten and UKpower networks have agreed to replace and I have asked to have this moved this out of our garden, they have agreed with no fee for doing this because they only have a wayleave for the previous owners in ’95, we have lived here for 4 years.
    Question is do you think we are due anything for the last 4 years as they had originally quoted in ’03 £5k to do this work and now it is free? Obviously I’m glad we aren’t paying for this but wondered if we were due anything since ownership -last 4 years. House value ~£550k. Thanks

  32. I have what I presume are LV cables coming out of the ground at the side of my property, running up it to between the ground and first floors, and the around the back of the property.

    They continue right along the back of my row of terraced houses (5 in total) with each property taking a feed.

    These are preventing me being able to extend my property as I wish so do you think I have any basis for a claim for loss of amenity/future value ?

    Any thoughts much appreciated.


    1. I’d imagine you’d need to ascertain the provider and contact them regarding existing provision/agreements. They should hopefully be able to assist in the first instance.

  33. Sharon Thomas says:

    Hi just a quick couple of question to see if you can advise me any. In the summer came home from a walk found 2 open reach workers drilling the back of my house just finishing putting a fibre long black box and wires up. I asked what on earth they were doing the said we’ve finished but why did I have a problem I said because its my house and you haven’t had permission to drill my walls and put all that up they said they thought it was a council house and they’d gave permission to say I was fuming was a understatement I went to find the boss but couldn’t I emailed and emailed nothing I was ringing and ringing nothing so I thought I would wait till all the covid was finished I would get on with it again about the middle of October I received a wayleave for more cable to run on the back of my house I contacted the officer told him how disgusted I was with there conduct he said leave it with me I will make a claim for that and this wire £185 came in the post this morning a offer for this imight add and a letter to sign it straight away then I will get my money I’m gobsmacked do I seek legal action or do I accept it legally a big firm like BT I think I won’t stand a chance any advice would be really grateful xxx

    1. I would suggest contacting a professional as this doesn’t sound completely right in terms of access without permission etc. Whilst I’d love to help, a qualified financial adviser or solicitor would be your my suggestion.

  34. Lesley Diss says:

    My friend is having some work done by an energy company to lat electric cable acrodd her land and they have asked her to pay them £650 for a ‘wayleave’ to enter her land. That sounds crazy…

    1. Hi Lesley, Your friend’s case sounds like there may be some legal entanglement on the land already. If in any doubt contact the local wayleave officer or take qualified financial advice.

  35. David Tattersall says:

    I have a pole and stay in my back garden of the house I recently bought.
    The pole is 7 feet from the back of the house, its a terraced cottage approx 300 year old and has no back door and the ground comes up 4 feet above the floor inside the house. This means I cannot put a back door in and build steps up or build a porch which we would like to do as it would be within 2m of the pole.
    I was told when I bought the house that the pole was due to be replaced as it is 70 year old and it could be moved at the same time.

    I’ve contacted the electricity board about moving it and a wayleave payment.
    They have quoted £10,183.85 plus vat to move it 2m and they would need permission from all the neighbours connected to it. I’m not prepared to pay that and I don’t think they’ll get the permission off the neighbours.
    Another department has offered the standard wayleave payment (I have asked for a copy of these) which I have not signed and they are pestering me to do so.

    This is impacting the accesability of using my garden which was bought off the local farmer after the pole was erected.
    Therefore also affecting the value of the property.

    What should I do next to resolve?

    1. Your local wayleave officer may be able to give you some advice as this sounds like the wayleave may have already existed in some form from the previous owner (ie- the farmer). You’d need to clarify with them which body advised the pole was being moved and I suspect you may need to take qualified financial advice looking at the deeds and permissions in existence on your property.

    2. DT, [I am assuming the pole / cable serves more than just your own property] You are entitled to invite the network operator to move the pole / cable and you may agree to their terms (They are allowed to charge you for the work you are asking for) but you do not need to pay. There is another way. If there is no Easement or Wayleave (and because you say, they have offered to enter a wayleave agreement – there obviously is not one in place) you can demand they take the pole away. They are obliged to do so unless an easement or wayleave allows them to keep it there. The process is slow! and the Network Operator will either agree to move the pole OR they will (almost certainly) ask the Secretary for State for a “Necessary Wayleave”. A “Necessary Wayleave” is different to a voluntary wayleave (the type everyone else is discussing in this thread) – it is a type of Compulsory Purchase granted by Government to the Electricity line owner to allow them to install or keep a line or pole etc in place. The Compensation payable for a Necessary Wayleave is much higher. It is calculated by reference to the difference between the valuation of the property without the powerline / poles and with them. The greater the impact on the property, the greater the compensation. I know one case where the wires from a pylon only crossed into the airspace above a rear garden when the wind blew in a certain direction and above a certain wind-speed (so nearly always was outside of the property boundary) but this case still entitled the owners to several thousand pounds. I would be inclined, if its not urgent, to demand they take away the pole (Called serving a Notice to Remove under Schedule 4 of the Electricity Act 1989). It does take a couple of years, maybe even 3 or 4 to get everything done though.

  36. Hi There
    We accepted a Wayleave agreement with Northern PowerGrid recently for £175 in respect of ‘placing and keeping installed, ‘using, inspecting, maintaining adjusting, replacing, repairing’ in respect of 1x span of wires clipped to the rear of our property feeding the neighbours property and also 1x underground cable to the front garden of our property.
    Is this likely to impact the saleability of our property and will it impact/put-off any future buyer when this inevitably comes up on the searches?

    1. The wayleave may appear on deeds or need to be declared, depending on the proximity and impact on the future use of the land/building, it may impact saleability. All properties would need a trained professional to assess the financial implications where a wayleave is in place in order to advise on that impact.

  37. Savvydaddy, I live in an offset terrace house with telephone cables crossing my drive way to a box on the side of my neighbours wall that can only be accessed from my driveway. These cables then supply phone connection to 4 other houses in the terrace (2 on either side of mine) by cables attached to the outside of the walls. Would I be eligible for any form of wayleave payment for these?

  38. Hi. I have just been offered £850 ish for a 25 year wayleave, including a backdated amount from the energy company. Obviously,Sherwill Drake will take their 24% inc vat. But I am happy with that.

    A couple of questions: It has been noted that a pole could affect saleability. But, in the real world, could a landowner lget the power company to move the poles? Also, the offer states that the wayleave expires if we sell the property, so how would the WL affect saleability? If we sold next year, would they claim back the balance of 25 years?

    The pole carries telecom lines to my neighbours. Can I make a seperate claim to the telecoms company?

    Finally, my in laws have a Telecoms junction box on the side of their house, accessible only from their rear garden. Lines then run from their house to the whole terrace. Do they have a claim?


  39. Hi. I received a letter from Sherwill Drake Forbes this morning telling me that I am entitled to a payment for underground electricity cables at my property. I live in a mid terrace house on an estate that was built in 1998. All I can see is one street light which is about six inches from my front garden fence but is actually on the pavement. Presumably there must be cables that run somewhere? SDF say that their mapping team have reviewed the local records for my area and they believe underground electricity cables pass through my property. I’ve studied the surveyors report carried out when I purchased the property in 2011 and can find nothing. Please may I ask your advice?

    Thank you

    1. Hi Cathy,

      Sounds like you have most in hand. Ultimately, it is now a decision about whether you wish to claim yourself or use a claims company like Sherwill Drake Forbes or TB. Claiming via them is easier and they’ll handle tricky claims better, however, you’ll get less as they take a cut.

  40. Lynn Scarry says:

    I have a quite large metal pylon maybe 100 yds from my house conversion. I had a letter many years ago (I have it still somewhere) stating that if I got planning permission then they would consider moving it.
    Do you think this is a possiblity, should I employ someone to handle this and if they say no, can I claim a larger compensation for the 3 no. on my land, I get £101.94 a year for these, I haven’t cashed the cheque in yet from dec 2021 because I thinkthey are worth more than that, what do you think?

    1. In the first instance, I’d contact the company to see what they have to say. They may revise their offer. Once you’ve got the details, you can see what’s what and if needed contact others for support.

  41. Duncan Sumner says:

    Hi, I moved into a house that has a Substation on the land owned by Electricity North West, taking up approximately 25% of the garden. I might have been naive, but I didn’t know that we could be paid for it being on our land. I received a letter from Electricity North West saying that i had not cashed the cheque dated June 2020, for £1. I cannot believe that a payment of £1 per year is sufficient compensation.

    When the substation was initially built, i assume they would have paid the landowner at the time, but now i owe the land, shouldn’t i be asking them to pay a fair amount?

    I have looked, and i can’t find any paperwork concerning the substation

    Who would you recommend using to pursue a claim for this

    1. In the first instance, your local wayleave officer (who should be contactable via the county council) may be able to signpost you. Once you have the details you can then ask the company to clarify what the payments are for (specifically) and check they tally with what the wayleave officer says. If you feel you’re up against a brick wall and unable to claim yourself, my articles contain the details for the two major compensation companies that can negotiate on your behalf.

      1. Robert Shaw says:

        Complicated one. BT put notice up about new wooden pole to be sited outside neighbours house. We didnt object. There is a byway that runs between ours and there house. On installation i think openreach realised the pole position wouldnt allow them to fly the cables from the next pole. I saw them digging around a bit by neighbours gate post. Came home to find they had erected it very close to my car port on the byway.Without asking they have entered propèrty to pull cables up and connect to pole. The position of the wire has now made it difficult to use a cherry picker to clean out my blocked gutters and downpipe. Ladder access not possible and scaffpld to expensive. Have lodged a complaint but waiting a reply. Severak years ago the local council said the trees along the byway were my responsibility, wondering now if BT have sited the pole on land im responsible for…Have asked BT to provide me with details of there permissions to install along a byway…should be interesting..

    2. What I can say is this:
      One pound per year is the normal rate paid by the electricity companies to “landlords” (the freeholders) as ground-rent pursuant to a Leasehold (usually a 99 year Lease) which will have been purchased in the past, the seller of the leasehold will have agreed to those terms in exchange for a much more worth while sum at that time.

  42. Hi, I’ve received a letter from SDF informing that I’m entitled to claim a wayleave payment which I’m interested in doing. However I am due to move house in the next 10 days or so – does this mean that I cannot claim as by the time a claim would be completed I will no longer be the owner of the property? I’d be grateful if someone can advise. Thanks.

    1. You’d need to check with the company, but I would suspect you’d need to be the current owner – I’m uncertain about “historic” claims.

  43. Hi, interesting article and discussion. I have a slightly different situation to those mentioned already. I receive a wayleave payment for a wooden pole in our front garden, this feeds a pole in the back garden of next door and then this feeds via an overhead cable our semi detached property. However as well a supplying our property there is then a feed fixed to the fascia boards going round the back of our property to supply the attached semi. Electricity North West have accepted I have a valid claim and are appointing an external surveyor to visit the property. Has anyone experience of this situation and received compensation?
    There is an additional problem in that I want to fit upvc fascia boards and I have been informed that they would remove them but only refit them to the wall and not the fascia boards. I understand that you can serve notice on the Electricity Company to remove them. Has anyone any experience of this and able to offer advice?

  44. James Greig says:

    Hi. My question is slightly different. I have a pylon and HV cables crossing my land. I now have planning permission to build a new house there. The wayleave agreement was prepared (with the previous owner) in 1998 and ‘capitalised’ for 10 years. (I have never received any monies.) Can I ask the Electricity company to reroute underground? I live in Scotland.

    1. Hi James, I would certainly approach them in the first instance to see what their advice and knowledge in regards to the land and previous wayleaves is.

  45. Helen Baker says:

    I’ve been offered £150.14 for a 15 year garden wayleave for cables across my land. The sum seems right but wasn’t sure if the term would normally be 15 years. It sounds like the agreement is not backdated when opting for the lump sum. Is this about right ? Obviously there is no obligation on the utility companies to approach to landowner regarding these Wayleave obligations.

    1. Hi Helen,

      I believe the terms of a wayleave can effectively be whatever the company and landowner agree. So, it can be tricky to compare case for case, particularly as all land varies in terms of access, value and utilities on or under the land. Have they given you alternatives to payments per year? or different terms?

      1. Helen Baker says:

        Yes, £2 per year backdated for two years.

  46. I have a leasehold flat in a private development which has a sublease to the headlease holder. I am a director of the leaseholders association (100 units)

    A broadband company has come in and dug up our pavings (we own, manage, repair and pay for roads, drains and pavings) claiming they have a wayleave from the head leaseholder. They have installed a standing junction box on our pavement on a corner narrowing the path to less than a wheelchair width (my opinion). They intend to carry on with more excavations and installing more junction boxes.

    Does the head leaseholder have a right to give permission (whether you call it a wayleave or not) for them to come onto our subleased estate and dig up our pavements without notice? And to erect standing junction boxes without prior notice?

  47. Is the wayleave payment affected by how many cables come out of a LV pole?

    About a year ago we were offered £350.02 (what’s the 2p about?!) for a 15 year wayleave for a pole, staywire and one cable, we hadn’t got around to signing it. Since then our neighbour applied to have their cable moved and the electricity company now want to add the new cable to our pole but have not increased the wayleave offer.

    Do I have any bargaining power here to increase the compensation?

  48. jane potter says:


    Please advise. I have a BT signal box on my wall. I never received any payment so i chased it up. BT have offered £157 should i accept? This seems very low for the number of years its been on my wall. Many Years.

    1. Hi, sorry we cannot offer advice on this. Readers will ultimately have to make their own decisions about whether to use claims companies or pursue themselves. In many cases, consulting a qualified IFA might be the best course of action, particularly if you’re looking to sell in the future.

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