ScottishPower has recently completed work to connect the village of Abergeirw in Mid Wales to the electricity network for the first time – thought to be the last village in their network area to be fully connected to the National Grid. Work to install 9km of overhead power lines and construct 9 substations began in June 2008 and was completed at the start of December. The village, which consists of 9 properties, will now have a full electricity connection in time for Christmas.
A Charitable Trust set up by the local community, named “Menter Egni Abergeirw”, first applied in 2006 to Gwynedd County Council and Snowdonia National Park for grants to support their application for the connection.
The next stage of the process required ScottishPower engineers to design a route for the required 11kV connection across some of the most arduous terrain in the country. After numerous site visits and detailed negotiations with the National Park, a design for the connection was agreed by all parties in June 2008.
Timescales to complete the project were tight, so ScottishPower took the decision to quickly establish its own in-house team to construct the line, and work began straight away.
The first of 95 poles was mounted in glorious sunshine at the start of June, and the last pole was constructed in three inches of snow at the beginning of December.
At an opening ceremony today (Friday 19 December) in the local village hall, Elfyn Llwyd, MP for Meirionydd Nant Conwy, joined villagers and representatives from the County Council and the Snowdonia National Park in celebration of the connection being completed.
Also present was Gary Evans, New Connections Manager at ScottishPower. He said: “The local community and County Council worked extremely hard to get the funding for this connection and I am delighted that we have been able to deliver the project in time for Christmas. The processes involved in designing and constructing the line threw up many challenges and we worked very closely with all the parties involved to agree the best solution.
“Although we had a lot of issues to consider and hurdles to overcome, our project team showed great dedication and commitment to finish the project in time and we are very pleased that the residents of Abergeirw are now fully connected to the National Grid.”
Media Information: Paul Ferguson 0141 566 4515 / 07702 665 924