Claire Maugham to lead comms for nationwide smart meter programme

Former Equal Opportunities Commission media director Claire Maugham has joined a new body charged with selling the benefits of internet-connected electricity and gas meters to Britons ahead of a nationwide installation programme.

Claire Maugham: previously at think-tank Centre for Cities
Claire Maugham: previously at think-tank Centre for Cities

The Smart Meter Central Delivery Board, which was set up by the Government and is funded by energy companies, has appointed Maugham as director of communications.

She was previously deputy director and director of external affairs at the Centre for Cities think-tank and has held senior communications roles at the Equal Opportunities Commission, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and IBM.

The Government has set a target of having smart meters in every home by 2020 with the installation the responsibility of energy companies.

However, it is not compulsory for people to take the meters and their current meters will not stop working.

It has tasked the board with increasing consumers' willingness to use smart meters to reduce their energy consumption and build their confidence in their installation.

Maugham compared the job to the recently completed nationwide analogue to digital television switchover project, though without the compulsory switch-off for analogue.

The organisation is expected to review its needs for PR agency support later in the year and will expand its in-house team further.

The board has also hired former Media Trust marketing director Gavin Sheppard as director of marketing.

Sheppard is currently overseeing a pitch for creative, media and digital services, which will include a brand identity and new name for the SMCDB. This brief is worth £85m over five years.


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