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Power lines to be removed at Shingle Street to improve the local picture

Work is underway on a £425,000 project to remove overhead power lines to transform Shingle Street in Suffolk for its wildlife, visitors and residents.

From Press releases - 3 April 2019 12:00 AM

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UK Power Networks which owns and operates the electricity network in the East of England will be removing around 3.3km of 11,000-volt overhead power lines and associated equipment, after installing 3.8km of underground cables to continue safely delivering power to the area.

As well as improving the outstanding views at this remote coastal village within Suffolk Coast & Heaths Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB), the work will remove any risk of birds flying into overhead lines. Ground work has already started with the removal of lines and poles scheduled for later this year.

The scheme is funded by a special allowance from electricity industry regulator Ofgem, to improve the landscape in AONBs and National Parks.

The coastal hamlet with around 40 households taking power from this section of line, can be prone to flooding which has been factored into the work which should make supplies more reliable.

UK Power Networks project manager Trevor Phillips said: “This is already a stunning location and removing the power lines will only improve it further.

“There are also practical reasons for this work including the fact that underground cabling should be less likely to suffer damage so local power supplies will be more reliable.

“There are some challenges with this terrain as the land is prone to flooding, but we have designed the project accordingly and are pleased to be part of a project that will make such a positive long-term difference to east Suffolk.”

Councillor David Wood, chair of the Suffolk Coast & Heaths AONB Partnership said: “We are delighted that after working with the local community and UK Power Networks on this project, the final stage of enhancing the landscape has begun. 

“The overhead wires currently interrupt the views enjoyed in this area and bring modern infrastructure to such a natural, wild and special place.

“Shingle Street is a delightful and special place and this work will provide an immediate and lasting improvement to the views within this Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.”

Catherine Lindsay-Davies from the Shingle Street Settlement Company says “We are very happy that these works are underway. Our first discussions about the project were in 2008, and there have been times when we feared it would not happen at all. This important project recognises the beautiful and fragile environment of Shingle Street as well as the needs of the community that lives here.”