Colin Davie

Davie – pylons plan a ‘silly idea’

Lincolnshire County Council says it is vowing to fight plans for the ‘silly idea’ of a new electricity pylon line through the district.

National Grid’s plan for the connection from Grimsby to Walpole in Norfolk is set to go right through South Holland, including linking up with a sub-station north of Spalding that’s being proposed for the Outer Dowsing offshore wind farm project.
It was a hot topic at the county council last week where its executive member for economic development, environment and planning Colin Davie said the authority would be objecting.
“Consultations are about options,” he said. “There’s three options, but they’ve discounted two because they say they’re not affordable.
“That’s not really a consultation in my book. This is just the beginning of what could be a massive change to Lincolnshire.
“Pylons, if built, with substations will need additional converter stations.
“All of this is nonsense. It’s a 20th century solution for a 22nd century challenge.
“National Grid really needs to go away and redesign what they’re proposing and go with the offshore option.
“The Dutch are building substations offshore and there’s a proposal off the Scottish coast.
“We’ll not be supporting any pylons in Lincolnshire.
“We’ll be saying to National Grid they need to go away, think again and redesign.
“We’ll work with them as we’ve done other companies that have come up with silly ideas in the past.”
Coun Rob Gibson asked Coun Davie a question about the impact on South Holland.
“Where you are in the south of the county we’ve some of the most important prime agricultural land in the country,” he said. “It may not be designated in the way the Wolds is, but the Fenland landscapes are of critical importance as well,” he said.
“Your MP Sir John Hayes is leading the campaign group in parliament so I think we have a proper campaign.
“We now need to turn that into a real message to local government, that they need to think again and deliver the option that will best for the county our areas and the consumer.
“All of this is going to cost the consumer a lot of money and it will go on every consumer’s bill to pay for it.”
National Grid has said the other options would cost it and bill payers more money.
The consultation runs until March 13.
Leader of the council Martin Hill said: “We seem to be under attack on large infrastructure projects.
“I think stuff will have to happen and move forward, but there’s a challenge of balancing it with food production and the natural beauty of the countryside. A bit is ok but when you get areas blotted out by large scale solar farms it becomes an issue.
“Most of this stuff is not for the benefit of Lincolnshire residents it will go to other parts of the country.
“Trying to protect our heritage is very important and it’s something we will continue to fight our corner on.”
The plans are part of National Grid’s ‘Great Grid Update’.
“The upgrade is required to support the UK’s net zero target by reinforcing the electricity transmission network in Lincolnshire, Cambridgeshire, and Norfolk, and facilitate the connection of planned offshore wind generation, battery storage and solar, interconnectors with other countries and subsea links to Scotland, allowing clean energy to be carried on the network.

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