SP Energy Networks set to connect community windfarm to Grid


Engineers from SP Energy Networks are working to connect the three-turbine Hoprigshiels Community Windfarm in the Scottish Borders.

The project is the first wind farm developed by a Housing Association in the UK and is due to complete early next year. It has been developed by a partnership between Borders Housing Association (BHA) and Community Energy Scotland (CES).

The SP Energy Networks (SPEN) arm of ScottishPower owns and operates the electricity transmission and distribution network in the area.

SP Energy Networks are working to connect the three-turbine Hoprigshiels Community Windfarm

To enable the power generated by the wind farm to be fed in to the Grid, SPEN will lay around 18 kilometres of new cables over the next 7 months.

Once connected, it is expected that the windfarm will generate around 24.5GWh of electricity a year, enough to power around 4000 households.

Diversions are in place in the local area for domestic and agricultural traffic while underground cables are installed. SPEN representatives have been attending East Lammermuir and Cockburnspath and Cove Community Council meetings to explain more about their work and to answer any questions residents may have.

Johan Gillespie, Customer Engagement Manager at SP Energy Networks, said: “We’re liaising closely with the local community as well as both Scottish Borders and East Lothian Council around the work that we require to carry out and will look to minimise disruption wherever possible. There will be some temporary road closures in place whilst the work is carried out, which we expect to be completed by the end of January.

“While our engineers have connected many windfarms in the past, this is the first time we’ve connected one to the Grid that is wholly owned by two charities. The connection will be solely underground so there is no visual impact and it’s great to play a part in another exciting stage for this unique community driven project.”

Hoprigshiels Community Windfarm - Turbine blades arrive on site ready for the next phase of construction

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