National Grid appointed 3G Comunications, a specialist communications consultancy, to provide strategic and practical support during the pre-application consultation process for the Hinkley Point C connection. This agency advises on regional characteristics including target groups with specific requirements.
After an initial briefing, the consultancy developed a detailed communication and consultation strategy. This started with a stakeholder mapping to identify groups either affected or those which have an interest in the project proposals. On the basis of this initial evaluation, communication techniques were identified and implemented to ensure an appropriate level of engagement with each of these groups.
Using input from the local authorities, the consultation strategy also addresses ‘hard to reach groups’. This encourages engagement with groups that do not usually participate in this type of exercise. Examples include providing information material in different languages, braille format, or audio versions for the visually impaired. This is in addition to taking events out into the community in order to capture feedback from under-represented groups or areas.