SP Energy Networks has opened a public consultation today (23rd November) regarding their proposals for an £18 million reinforcement project to develop a new wooden pole overhead line between Oswestry and Wem – which seeks to support local growth and future development in North Shropshire. As part of the consultation, five public information days have been planned in early December in Wem, Whittington, Hordley, Cockshutt and Oswestry.
In May 2017, the company published their preferred line route with options near the Woodhouse Estate, Lower Hordley and Noneley. The preferred line route has now been refined further, showing the proposed locations for placing wood poles and the underground cable needed for the new circuit.
SP Energy Networks has confirmed that the electrical circuit will be placed underground for the 1.2 kilometres between Oswestry substation and Round Wood. This is influenced by the existing overhead lines at Oswestry substation, as well as the A5. The cable would be buried one metre deep, and any land affected by this work will be reinstated following construction. The land near to Oswestry substation, east of the A5, has been designated for business growth and the company will ensure their plans have as little impact on this as possible.
From Round Wood to Wem substation, the proposal will see 21 kilometres of wood pole Trident line. This will require around 176 wooden poles, with an average height of 12 metres. The preferred locations for the wood poles have been identified, within a 25 metre temporary construction works corridor.
For the purposes of this consultation, the 25 metre temporary construction works corridor has been extended to 40 metres. This additional area allows for minor changes to take place, following landowner discussions and should any new information become available through the consultation.
Mark Sobczak, 132kV General Manager at SP Energy Networks, said: “We look forward to this consultation period opening and meeting with people across North Shropshire to talk about our plans. The proposed pole locations have been designed to reduce the effects on important sites, communities and properties, based on the information local people have given us and our technical surveys. Our proposals are based on conversations with landowners and residents, which have helped refine our design. Since 2016, we have received hundreds of comments on the proposals and we have undertaken a wide variety of studies, all of which have helped to shape our plans. We want to encourage as many people as possible to come and view our plans and talk to the project team.”
The feedback received in the consultation will help SP Energy Networks to finalise their plans, ahead of submitting a formal planning application in 2018.
The Public Information Days will take place in the following locations:
- Saturday 2 December Wem Town Hall 11am – 4pm
- Tuesday 5 December Whittington Community Centre 4.30pm – 8pm
- Wednesday 6 December Hordley and Bagley Village Hall 2.30pm – 6.30pm
- Tuesday 12 December Cockshutt Memorial Hall 2.30pm – 6.30pm
- Wednesday 13 December Eastern Oswestry Community Centre 4pm – 8pm