SP Energy Networks has officially opened their newly refurbished depot in Galashiels, which will serve as the company’s main operational hub in the Borders region.
With investment of just under £1 million, the new state-of-the-art facility will be the main centre for managing all maintenance and investment activities on the electricity network in the Borders. It also features a new Emergency Action Centre that will oversee all storm related emergency response activity for the region.
This major investment from SP Energy Networks is one element of an extensive modernisation programme currently underway in the Borders area. In recent years the company has modernised and upgraded the main grid substations on Netherdale Road in Galashiels and in Lauder, costing over £2m, and made significant upgrades to flood defence measures in areas such as Yetholm Primary Substation.
The company’s overhead line rebuild programme continues annually in the Borders, with £4.6m and 102km of network being rebuilt, and £3.2m and 574km being refurbished recently. Upcoming major investments plan for the area include the £5.5m replacement of the transformers at Galashiels Grid substation starting in 2015.
Frank Mitchell, CEO of SP Energy Networks, said: “This substantial investment to create a modern, state-of-the-art headquarters in the Borders is important to support ambitious investment plans for the area. It will also be the main office to oversee any emergency response activity, such as storm events during the winter, as we have seen in the last few years.
“As well as our plans to invest millions of pounds in modernising the network in the Borders, we are looking at innovative projects to support community renewable energy schemes and making it easier to connect to the network.
“Over the next decade we will also be recruiting a new generation of engineers, many of whom will be apprentices and graduates. In the Borders area we anticipate supporting many new roles in the coming years, as well as creating hundreds of opportunities with contractors across the region.”
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Picture 1: Frank Mitchell (CEO SP Energy Networks, Centre Left), Mark Everett (Borders Zone Manager SP Energy Networks, Centre Right) and SP Energy Networks Apprentices (Simon Tait, Robert Fuscca, Luke Newlands and Sam Newlands) at the opening of the revamped £1m Galashiels office and Emergency Action Centre
Picture 2: Frank Mitchell and SP Energy Networks apprentices inside the revamped £1m Galashiels Emergency Action Centre